Jackson College to host outdoor commencement Saturday
April 26, 2022
Jackson College will host commencement ceremonies for graduates of fall 2021, spring 2022 and summer 2022 semesters this Saturday, April 30 at 11 a.m. outside Bert Walker Hall on the north end of campus. An outdoor commencement ceremony is planned, with Potter Center as a back-up in case of inclement weather.
The College first hosted an outdoor ceremony last September to allow for social distancing in the continuing pandemic. Graduates, family and friends sit in designated areas in the Bert Walker Hall parking lot while faculty and administration sit on the Walker Hall “terrace.” Graduates walk across the terrace to be recognized on their accomplishment. About 250 graduates are expected to participate in Saturday’s ceremony, with many more eligible but unable to make the ceremony.
Jackson College will recognize distinguished alumni and service awardees for 2002 at the commencement ceremony as well.
2022 Distinguished Service Award, Leland K. Bassett. Bassett, an alumnus of Jackson Junior College, has had a distinguished career in the application of communication psychology and strategic planning to public relations, corporate communications and integration communication management. He co-founded the nation’s first commercial communication arts and sciences-based professional services firm with his spouse, Tina, in 1986, the Detroit-based Bassett & Bassett, Inc., Communications Managers and Counselors, now part of The Bassett Business Group with a communication skills school and consulting office in Pune, India. With a commitment to giving back to future generations, Leland and Tina Bassett established the Vera Bassett Nursing Scholarship in honor of his mother who was instrumental in establishing the Jackson College nursing program. The scholarship has benefitted 300 students.
2022 Dr. Ethelene Jones Crockett Distinguished Alumni Award, Christopher A. Simpson. Simpson brings a distinguished record with decades of service to our country and community. He served in the U.S. Army and the Michigan Army National Guard and served Jackson as a decorated police officer for 26 years. Most recently, he became undersheriff of Jackson County in December 2020. Simpson has served his community in leadership roles for the Domestic Violence Coordinating Council, Jackson Human Services Coordinating Alliance, Jackson YMCA, Jackson Community Foundation, Highfields, Jackson Chamber of Commerce, Jackson County NAACP, and the Jackson College Foundation. He is routinely honored for his dedication to service, with numerous military medals and citations, police honors, and community recognitions. Simpson was recently appointed to serve on the College’s Board of Trustees.