First Fall Commencement Ceremony for Edison State College, Collier Graduate Overcomes Obstacles to Succeed

Dec 4, 2009

For the first time in its 48 year history, Edison State College will host a Fall Commencement Ceremony. 


“The recent increase in enrollment growth at Edison State warrants the additional ceremony in an effort to provide a more personal atmosphere,” said Dr. Steve Atkins, Vice President of Academic and Student Services.  “More than 1,500 students from Edison State’s three campuses and two centers will earn a degree.” 


More than 100 students will don gowns and take the stage of the Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall in Fort Myers to receive their diplomas. For Wezberly Beauplan the journey has not been easy.  He came to Naples from Haiti when he was just 16 years old in search of education and opportunity.  He left behind family and friends, adjusted to a new education system and a new language.  In just two years the hardworking teen graduating from Lely high school he successfully mastered his third language (English) and earned a high school diploma.   That was 2005.  


“Because I was not an official U.S. resident I did not qualify for financial aid or scholarships,” said Beauplan.  “I took two years to work, save money and to earn my U.S. residency so I could afford to go to college.”


In 2007, he proudly enrolled in at the Collier Campus and began working toward an Associate’s degree.  That year he also became a U.S. resident.


 “Since coming to America, I had always heard good things about Edison State College,” said Beauplan.   “I wanted to attend school in at an institution that places an importance on community involvement, so I chose the Edison Collier Campus.”


During his two year tenure, Beauplan worked full time, but kept education as his primary focus, managing to maintain a grade point average above a 3.0 and has participated extracurricular activities ranging from Student Government Association to president of the Multicultural Club.  Outside of Edison State he also volunteers for a local shelter for abused and battered women and the local branch of the NAACP. 


Upon graduation this fall, Wezberly will pursue a Bachelor of Science degree in Supervision and Management, transferring from the Collier to the Lee campus.  “Edison State is not only affordable and convenient,” said Wezberly.  “Everyone at the College, from faculty and staff to students, has helped me grow personally and professionally, motivating me to succeed.  I love it here.”


The ceremony includes graduates from Edison State’s entire district including campuses in Lee, Collier and Charlotte counties, the Hendry/Glades Center and Edison Online.  The ceremony will be held at the Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall, Thursday, December 10th at 6:00pm