Broward College Celebrated May 2021 Graduates with Grad Fest and Virtual Commencement

The virtual ceremony took place on Saturday, May 8

FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (May 12, 2021) -- Broward College honored its spring 2021 graduating class with a virtual Commencement ceremony broadcast via live stream on Saturday, May 8 at 1 p.m.

The College kicked off its celebration on April 23 and 24 with Grad Fest, a two-day event on its A. Hugh Adams Central Campus. Grad Fest offered students the opportunity to have their graduation portrait taken and participate in the drive-through diploma event where  College administrators provided students with their diploma covers.

The virtual ceremony on May 8 featured remarks from President Gregory Haile, J.D., and a keynote address from Germaine Smith-Baugh, Ed.D., president and CEO of Urban League of Broward County. Urban League of Broward County is a non-profit organization dedicated to elevating living standards for families in underserved urban communities. Dr. Smith-Baugh is credited with several achievements, including opening a $9 million Community Empowerment Center located in the Historic Sistrunk Community. Her leadership in breaking the cycle of poverty for countless families has garnered numerous accolades throughout her career.

This spring term, the youngest Broward College graduate was 17 years old, and the oldest was 73 years old, and there were 52 veterans. More than 3,000 students graduated, including 1,926 earning Associate of Arts degrees; 573 earning Associate of Applied Science and Associate of Science degrees; 300 Bachelor of Science degrees, including graduates who earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and Bachelor of Applied Science.

Below are a few stories of notable May 2021 graduates:

Mashava Charles-Piggott

The timing of this commencement could not have had greater significance for the 34-year-old wife, mother, and now college graduate as it came hours before Mother's Day and marked her transition to working on her future occupation, which was inspired by her experience of motherhood. After dropping out of high school, Mashava held a job she wasn't happy with and knew she needed to work toward her goal. Since then, she has gotten married, accepted a full-time position with a local airline, had a child, and graduated from Broward College with an Associate of Arts (general studies). Motivated by her love for children and her passion for caring for her 18-month-old son, she will begin classes at Nova Southeastern University. She is determined to work toward a bachelor's degree in the medical sonography program. Read her full story here.

Genica Da Silva Rosa

Many students face obstacles in college, but a brain aneurism and emergency surgeries could not have been predicted for 26-year-old international student Genica Da Silva Rosa. After battling 18 painful days in the hospital and life-saving surgery with no family around in June 2020, she was inspired by her mother and persisted in returning to her coursework. She began to volunteer on campus and was named student government campus president. She is grateful to be alive and to have graduated this spring with an associate degree focused on Business Administration. She will continue toward her dream of becoming an international businesswoman by pursuing a bachelor's degree at Florida International University this fall. Read her full story here.

Noah MacDonald

At 20 years old, Noah MacDonald graduated this semester with his Associate of Arts (general studies) and a ton of experience. Noah has been a full-time student while actively participating in several extracurricular activities. He joined the Distinction Society, became a student ambassador, was a work-study student in the Student Life department, and participated in the Safe Place club, which focuses on mental health. Although it could be overwhelming at times, Noah persevered. He was selected as a finalist for the prestigious Jack Kent Cooke scholarship, which awards financial support to high-achieving students who show determination and commitment toward their educational goals. He will continue on his educational journey pursuing a bachelor's degree in English Literature at the University of Central Florida. Read his full story here.

Rosean Monteith

Rosean Monteith is the first in his family to reach an incredible achievement, graduating from college. Rosean faced many challenges throughout his journey, including homelessness and mental health struggles in his late teens. The experiences forced him to grow up quickly, and despite it all, he continued through high school and on to Broward College. This inspired him to work toward his Associate of Arts with a focus on Social Work. His journey will continue at Florida Atlantic University, where he will pursue a degree in Public Management. Read his full story here.

For photos from Grad Fest, click here.

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Serving approximately 56,000 students annually, Broward College provides residents with certificate programs, two-year university-transfer degrees, two-year career degrees, and baccalaureate degrees in selected programs. The mission of the College is to provide high-quality educational programs and services that are affordable and accessible to a diverse community of learners. For more information, visit

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