37th Annual Commencement Ceremony at Genesee Community College on May 22

Genesee Community College's 2005 Spring Commencement ceremonies take place on Sunday, May 22 at 1:00 p.m. More than 2,000 guests are expected to honor 700+ Genesee graduates.

This year, U.S. gold medalist Abby A. Wambach will give the Commencement address to Genesee Community College's Class of 2005. The Rochester-area native led the U.S. Women's Soccer Team to a stunning 2-1 overtime victory against Brazil last year, and she has gained an international reputation as one of the most forceful offensive players in professional soccer.

Over the last several years, Ms. Wambach and her stellar performance has become nearly legendary. She was the leading scorer in the 2003 Women's World Cup with three goals, and helped win the game against Norway. She entered the 2004 Athens Olympic Games with 14 goals in 16 games, and she was named U.S. Soccer's Female Player of the Year in 2003.

Ms. Wambach began "her game" at age four, and she was a four-year varsity starter for Our Lady of Mercy High School basketball team, scoring 142 goals and earning All-Greater Rochester honors twice. After graduating from Mercy, she attended University of Florida where she majored in Leisure Service Management. In her senior year in Florida, she scored 31 goals, helping the team enter the NCAA Final four.

Each year Genesee Community College surveys its graduating class to determine how many students are continuing their academic goals to purse baccalaureate or higher degrees, or have secured employment in their program of study. Although the statistics for the Class of 2005 will not be available for several months, the Career and Transfer Center is busy providing services to the would-be graduates who are transferring to other colleges or universities, and also to those who are entering the workforce.

The Career and Transfer website currently lists over 70 local job opportunities in a wide array of professions. "We are quite pleased at the strength of the job market today, and believe all of our graduates will find suitable positions after graduation," Sue Marschke, Director of the Career and Transfer Center said. "We also have been offering a series of preparation workshops, such as resume and cover letter writing, honing interviewing skills and even business lunch etiquette."

The College Career and Transfer Center webpage is at the following Internet address: http://www.genesee.edu/ctc/jobs/default.cfm

Another telling sign of the job market strength are out-of-the-area "head hunter" offers. Several instructors in Genesee's healthcare programs have received rather lucrative incentives for their graduates to consider job offers in other states across the nation. Signing bonuses, relocation expense reimbursements, and all expenses paid for interviewing travel costs are among the common inducements health care graduates are receiving.

"While we always hope our graduates will stay in our community to work and raise their families, it is also exciting to learn of their successes across the nation," Mike Stoll, dean of Genesee's Math, Science and Career Education division said. "Clearly, our graduates with degrees in Nursing, Respiratory Care, Occupational Therapy Assistant or Physical Therapist Assistant can probably pick where they want to live and work. The job market for these, and graduates from many other programs offered by Genesee is wide open."

Editor's note: Special arrangements have been made for reporters to meet with a few notable Genesee Community College graduates at 12:30 p.m. in the President's Conference room at the college. Reservations for either the special graduate interviews or Commencement are not required.