142nd Commencement Ceremony Celebrates SPC’s 121 Years of Existence

December 16, 2019

Alexa Saavedra, Strategic Communications Coordinator

St. Philip’s College conferred degrees and certificates to over 350 students during the Fall 2019 Commencement Ceremony at the Freeman Colosseum on Friday, December 13, 2019. 

The San Antonio Youth Wind Ensemble provided processional and recessional music for the evening. The posting of the colors was presented by the Sam Houston High School Junior ROTC Cadets, accompanied by the St. Philip’s College Choir’s performance of the United States National Anthem. 

The evening featured Student Commencement Speaker, Terrance Johnson. Terrance shared his journey leading up to graduation and spoke on his experience with homelessness. After working 10+ years as an Orthodontic Assistant, he decided to leave the workforce and pursue an education in hopes of obtaining a financially secure future. 

“Losing the ability to provide for myself put me in the tough spot – it’s called being homeless. I used my studies as a tool to get me through these nights and I always showed up the next day ready to work even harder, not knowing where I would lay my head that night,” Terrance said.

At 25, Terrance was diagnosed with Hip Dysplasia. In Fall 2017, he had his left hip replaced. Due to his health issues, Terrance has taken out loans to continue towards achieving his goal of obtaining an education. When keynote speaker U.S. District Judge, Jason Kenneth Pulliam, delivered his speech, he announced he will be paying Terrance’s fall outstanding tuition balance.

The ceremony continued as it reflected on SPC’s 121 years of existence. The institution has evolved into a comprehensive institution offering over 100 degrees and certificates. Last year was monumental as the institution received the Governor’s Award for Performance Excellence and the National Baldrige Award. Additionally, the college was listed as one of the top 10 most admired colleges and universities and cited as one of the fasted growing Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Most recently, the college received the Online Learner Support Certification from Quality Matters. 

St. Philip’s College will continue to experience growth in 2020, as the college looks forward to the renovation and new construction projects for the MLK and Southwest Campuses. The projects include the new construction of the Bowden Building and Norris Technical Building. Click here to learn more about capital improvement projects.

For details on the December 13th ceremony, visit the college graduation page at http://alamo.edu/spc/graduation/ or email the college record and registration team at spc-gradadv@alamo.edu.