Students Recognized at MAC Commencement
May 12, 2012
Mineral Area College’s Park Hills campus will be busy
Saturday morning, May 5, as more than 260 students walk
through commencement ceremonies.
Several students will be recognized who demonstrate above-average
skill and hard work in service, classroom work, and other
areas of campus life. The seven Outstanding Student Awards
are offered in Art, Music, Athletics, Leadership and Campus
Service, Theatre, Career and Technical Education Division,
and Arts and Sciences Division.
Commencement begins at 10:30 a.m., May 5, in the Robert
E. Sechrest Sr. Field House.
Torey Watson, son of Todd Watson and Julie Watson, is
this year’s Outstanding Student from the Arts and Sciences
Division. Torey is from Leadington and attended school
in the West County School District, graduating in 2009.
His course load at MAC has emphasized science, as he has
been preparing to transfer to Southern Illinois University
in the fall where he will pursue a degree in pharmacy.
While at MAC, he has played on the golf team, has tutored
for Excel Student Support Services, and has been a member
of Phi Theta Kappa. He enjoys music, playing the trombone
and bass guitar, and is active in the Jazz Ensemble, Jazz
Combo, Studio Music performances, and Theater Band.
His jazz instructor, Michael Goldsmith, describes him
as an “outstanding student and even better, an incredible
person.” Torey indicated he has had a very positive experience
here at the college and cites being on the golf team and
playing for the various musical performances as highlights.
He acknowledged the extremely helpful staff he encounters
in his daily activities.
Mineral Area’s Outstanding Student from the Career and
Technical Education Division is Kayla R. Burt. Kayla is
from Desloge and graduated from North County High School
in 2010. Her parents are Kevin and Janice Bess. She is
married to Dan Burt.
She said she has met many amazing people at MAC and she
has enjoyed learning from her instructors. After she graduates,
she plans to continue working for her family-owned business
and is thinking of working toward a bachelor’s degree
in business in the near future.
The Outstanding Student in Art this year is Josh Gann.
Josh is from Farmington and is the son of Don and Karen
Gann. He is a graduate of Farmington High School. Josh
played baseball for one season for the MAC Cardinals.
He has taken a number of art courses with Jim Wilson,
art professor at MAC, and said that, under Wilson’s supervision,
he has had a wonderful artistic experience. He was involved
in an on-campus art exhibition known as the “Wise Guys”
which not only gave him the experience of displaying his
work but also helped him learn how to prepare for gallery
He is graduating this spring and has been accepted as
a student at the Kansas City Art Institute in the fall.
Two outstanding students will be honored in Athletics,
and they are Tanner Glore of Mineral Point and Walter
“Lee” Wilson of Perryville.
Tanner is the son of Jody Glore and Melissa Eye. He graduated
from Potosi High School in 2010. He is a baseball player,
and during his freshman year, he was designated as an
All-Conference and All-Region player. After he leaves
MAC, he will continue on to a four-year school, where
he hopes to be able to continue playing baseball while
he gets a bachelor’s degree in exercise science.
Walter “Lee” Wilson is a non-traditional student who
moved to Perryville from North Carolina. He and his wife,
Lani, have two children, Ethan and Talulah. Lee has not
only taken full academic loads but also plays on MAC’s
golf team and participates in Student Government Association.
He said he has enjoyed the personal relationships with
faculty and staff, and he has made great new friends.
Lee intends to get his education degree and will continue
his own education back in North Carolina at Appalachian
Lindsey Douglas is this year’s recipient of the Leadership
and Campus Service award. Lindsey is the daughter of Danny
and Paula Douglas, and she is a 2010 graduate of Farmington
High School. Lindsey has been an active member of Phi
Theta Kappa, serving as vice-president of scholarship,
and she is a member of the Art Club.
Her special area of interest is art, and her dream is
to pursue a career in which she is able to mix both creativity
and business. She will transfer this fall to University
of Missouri-Columbia, where she’ll major in textiles and
Lindsey said she has had many positive experiences at
MAC during her two years, including her art studies with
Wilson, going to Chicago with the Art Club, and holding
her own at the “Support the Arts” variety show. She will
continue to advocate keeping the arts in education.
Steven Young has been selected as this year’s Outstanding
Student in Music. Steven is the son of Robert and Valerie
Young, and he is a 2009 graduate of North County High
School. He has been a part of several music groups here
on campus, both vocal and instrumental. He has participated
in Jazz Ensemble, Jazz Combo, Studio Music, MAC Kicks
Band, MAC Singers, and Chamber Singers.
Through positive experiences in his classes and with
the various groups, Steven seed he feels he has matured
both as a person and as a student. Memorable times at
MAC include meeting and playing with world-renowned artists
at the annual MAC Jazz Festivals. He will continue his
education at MAC and then plans to attend a four-year
university to earn a degree in music performance.
The Outstanding Student in the area of Theatre is Ian
P. Miller, son of Frank and Katie Miller of Desloge. Ian
was home-schooled and came to MAC in the summer of 2009.
While at MAC he has been a member of the Little Theatre
Guild and of Delta Psi Omega, serving as president in
2010 and as secretary in 2011-12.
He has appeared in a variety of roles in several productions
including Falstaff in “Merry Wives of Windsor,” Master
in “Charlie Brown,” and Myself in “Godspell.” His latest
appearance was in the MAC production of “Cabaret.” He
said that over the last few years, he has made friends
he will have for the rest of his life and that he has
learned more than he ever could have imagined.
He said he feels he has picked up many skills that he
otherwise would not have had, had it not been for attending
MAC. Ian is planning to pursue his bachelor’s degree in
theater and dance study, and his career goal is to become
first a professional actor, and then one day, a director.
From left, Walter “Lee” Wilson, Kayla
R. Burt, Ian P. Miller, Lindsey Douglas, Torey Watson,
and Josh Gann. (Not pictured: Steven Young and Tanner