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Columbia College-Jacksonville and Columbia College-NAS Jacksonville to hold joint commencement July 17

Columbia College-Jacksonville and Columbia College-NAS Jacksonville will hold a joint commencement ceremony and recognize the 197 students who have completed degree requirements during the 2009-2010 academic year. The ceremony will be held on Saturday, July 17, at 6 p.m. at the Prime F. Osborn III Convention Center, 1000 Water St., Jacksonville, Fla.

The college will award 73 associate, 119 bachelor's and five master's degrees.

Anita Abbott Timmons '58, Columbia College trustee, will give the commencement address. Mike Randerson, vice president for Adult Higher Education, will confer the degrees. Dale Coe Simons '65, president of the Columbia College Alumni Association Board of Directors, will provide the alumni charge.

"Graduation is the culmination of students' efforts to improve their lives through education," said Randerson. "We are proud to honor their accomplishments."

Columbia College, a private, nonprofit institution, was founded in Missouri in 1851 as Christian Female College, the first women's college west of the Mississippi River to be chartered by a state legislature. The college changed its name to Columbia College in 1970 when it became coeducational.

Columbia College-Jacksonville, a metropolitan campus serving working adult learners in the Jacksonville area, was established in 2006. Columbia College-NAS Jacksonville serves the military and civilian population in the area and was founded in 1990 as an integral part of the Naval Air Station's Higher Education plan.

Both campuses are part of the college's extended network of more than 30 Nationwide Campuses across the country.

Columbia College in Columbia, Mo., educates more than 28,000 students each year and has more than 64,000 alumni worldwide. For more information, visit