LEE COUNTY, Fla. -- Hodges University held its first graduation ceremony in two years on Sunday. The school celebrated the Class of 2021, and the Class of 2020, which missed out on an in-person ceremony last year due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions.
Graduation means more than a diploma to Natalie Manuel. It's paving the way.
“This is huge for me. COVID came in - and I’m actually a 2020 graduate - and COVID tried to dampen the moment, but I didn’t graduate high school so this moment is very pivotal for me because I’m the first of eight kids to graduate college,” she said.
Dr John Meyer, President of Hodges University said the graduation ceremony was a long time coming, and puts a bow on years of perseverance.
”These students have sacrificed an awful lot - time, money, recreation. Whatever it takes to get the job done to earn their degree and move on to the next stage of their lives,” he said.
Collectively, 728 graduates will join the workforce from both cohorts.