Nearly 550 Hartnell College students will don caps and gowns on Friday, June 2, to celebrate their graduation during the college's 2006 commencement.
The ceremony will begin at 7 p.m. in the main gym.
A total of 478 students will receive associate degrees; another 67 will be awarded certificates of achievement. Those participating in the ceremony are summer 2005 and fall 2005 graduates as well as spring 2006 candidates for graduation.
John Martinez, vice president of Hartnell's board of trustees, will confer the degrees.
Edward J. Valeau, Hartnell president, will introduce the class valedictorians, who will address their fellow classmates.
Valedictorians are Hazel Lizarraga and Tamara Sanchez of Salinas; Claudia Henriquez of Los Banos; and Cary Tai-Yu Miao of Santa Cruz. Each val edictorian earned a grade point average (GPA) of 4.0 (straight A).
Honorary degrees will be presented to two Japanese leaders with close ties to Hartnell - Takiji Ito and Shigeyoshi Ohashi.
Ito, president of the Osaki Times in Sendai, Japan, has been a friend and supporter of Hartnell for more than 15 years. During visits by Hartnell faculty, staff and students to Japan, he publicized the visits in his newspaper and hosted the Hartnell delegates. He also has visited Hartnell several times, and has referred numerous Japanese students to enroll at Hartnell.
The other Japanese honoree, Shigeyoshi Ohashi, mayor of Wakuya Town, has brought Japanese business leaders, students to Hartnell for 17 years. He also has hosted several groups in Japan, including students and faculty members who have studied in Japan through the college's Boronda International Study Program.
Bonnie E. Phillips, a 1997 Hartnell graduate and currently an Emmy-winning executive producer for Channel 8 (KFMB-TV) of San Diego will receive the college's Distinguished Alumnus/Alumna Award. After receiving her A.A. degree from Hartnell, Phillips went on to San Jose State University where she received her bachelor's degree in broadcast journalism.
She produces news programming at the station, and has won a regional Emmy award for her coverage of the San Diego wildfires in 2003. She also is nominated for a 2006 Emmy for her station's 11 p.m. newscast.
Musical interludes will be provided by Hartnell's Symphonic Band, conducted by Carl Christensen.
A reception for graduates, their families and friends will be held following the ceremony in Steinbeck Hall, located in the College Center.
For more information about commencement, contact Mary Dominguez, director of enrollment services and commencement committee chair, at (831) 755-6714.