MEXICO - Months of intensive academic work and dedication paid dividends for six adult education students who recently graduated from the Center for Career and Community Education’s (CCCE) dental assisting program.

The six graduates, which consist of Tessie Jones, Sharon Gibson, Ashlee Hinckley, Emily Simpson, Sckyllar Lewis and Jackelyn Edelman, completed the 690-hour program to earn their certification. According to dental assisting instructor Melanie Kerschner, the graduates exhibited tremendous commitment as they studied topics such as dental theory, emergency care, infection control, preventive dentistry and dental radiology.

Graduation keynote speaker and CiTi Board of Education President John Shelmidine echoed Kerschner’s sentiments. He lauded the students for their ability to juggle multiple responsibilities while successfully completing their coursework.

“You are the model of hard work, focus and dedication,” Shelmidine said. “We believe in you and thank you for your efforts. We are standing in the presence of the embodiment of the phrase ‘lifelong learners.’”

In addition to receiving their diplomas, several additional awards were presented to members of the graduating class. Hinckley was honored as valedictorian while Lewis earned distinction as salutatorian. The pair were also inducted into the National Technical Honor Society along with Edelman. Perfect attendance certificates were presented to Hinckley and Gibson.

“Our (dental assisting) program has been enhanced because you have been part of it,” Shelmidine said. “Good luck in all your future endeavors.”

CCCE is a partnership between the Center for Instruction, Technology and Innovation and Cayuga Community College that provides adult and continuing education programs to Oswego County residents and employers. For more information, visit

Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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