Skip to main content

Diverse graduates to take part in spring commencement

Campus News | Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Columbus State Community College will celebrate its diverse graduating class at Spring Commencement this week. The graduates include a married couple, a valedictorian who is a military veteran, the fourth child from the same family to attend the College, and a teenager who is believed to be the youngest graduate ever at the Columbus State.

Greg Schumacher and his wife Karen will each receive Business Management degrees. They have five sons ages 12-27. Three sons are now serving in the military. Karen says, "About five years ago, Greg and I decided to set an example for all of our boys by getting degrees. We wanted to prove that you can work full-time jobs and raise a family, all while earning college degrees."

Brittany Peterson, 33, is a military veteran and the class valedictorian. She enrolled after her honorable discharge and says, "'I wanted to focus on my classes one semester at a time and aim for 100 percent, not out of pride or vanity, but on being the best that I could be." She earned straight A's that first semester and repeated that process over and over. Brittany will graduate with a perfect 4.0 grade point average and an Associate of Applied Science in Veterinary Technology.

Columbus State has become a second home for the Bashaw family. Nathan Bashaw, 21, is the fourth and final child in that family to earn a Columbus State degree – an associate of arts. To put it in perspective, since his oldest brother first enrolled a decade ago, there has always been at least one Bashaw taking a class at the college.

David Hamad, 15, is believed to be the youngest graduate of the college. His sister Danya graduated last spring when she was just 15 years old and was the youngest graduate at the time. However, David will actually be slightly younger when he receives his associate of science degree.

The family lives in Canal Winchester. David takes classes in Reynoldsburg, where Columbus State has a regional center connected to one of the district's high schools. That makes it convenient for David to take College Credit Plus classes, where students earn high school and college credit at the same time for college-level classes. David's academic action plan is to study pre-med at Capital University (where he has a full scholarship), attend medical school at the age of 17, and become a heart surgeon by the age of 21.

Nick Akins, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of American Electric Power, will provide the commencement address. Akins holds both a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in Electrical Engineering. In 2013, the AEP Foundation provided Columbus State with a $5 million gift to develop the Credits Count program for Columbus City Schools. The program prepares middle and high school students for STEM careers.

More than 1,200 students are graduating during spring semester commencement. It will be held Friday, May 11, at 10 a.m. at the Celeste Center on the Ohio State Fairgrounds, 717 East 17th Ave., Columbus. A live stream of the event will be available at:


Go to 2018 Archive Go to Campus News