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MNE Oasis program graduates five

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Taylor Prem

Five students will graduate from Mercyhurst North East’s Oasis program at a special graduation ceremony on Friday, May 29, at Mercyhurst North East. 

Oasis is a non-credit certificate program for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities interested in pursuing academic and vocational training in a traditional college setting, with an eye toward meaningful employment in the community upon graduation. Of the five graduates, three will receive certificates in culinary arts, Taylor Prem, Kayla Schack and Edward McBride; and two will receive certificates in hospitality, Sarah Mitchell and Katelynn Rubbico. Students will be recognized for both their academic and service learning achievements during the ceremony.

“I am so happy for our graduates,” stated Sara Kitchen, director of the Oasis Program. “While these ceremonies are always bittersweet, as they mark the end of a journey, I’m hopeful that our graduating class will continue on their path toward independence through self-determination.”

Erie County Councilman Jay Breneman will serve as speaker at the Oasis commencement. Breneman served in the U.S. Army from 2002 to 2009 and was honorably discharged at the rank of staff sergeant. He graduated from Mercyhurst University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in social work in 2011, and earned a Master of Science in social administration from Case Western Reserve University in 2012. Breneman was elected to Erie County Council in 2013.

Dr. Gary Brown, senior vice president and chief operating officer at Mercyhurst University, will deliver welcoming remarks at the ceremony.

The Oasis commencement ceremony is set for Friday, May 29, at 6 p.m. at Mercyhurst North East’s Alex Theatre.