Graduation Stories

Starting college is one thing; graduating is another. To help students achieve their goals, we are committed to finding ways to help them meet the high standards we have set for our graduates, and ensuring that they stay on track and graduate.

David Greene

David Greene was always interested in science, but when he graduated from high school, his chaotic home life led him to short-circuit those dreams and instead become a licensed practical nurse. Now, after working in hospice care for a decade, Greene has earned his degree from Valencia College and is eyeing a different goal: to become a doctor. 

Faith-Christina Duncan

Counselors told Faith-Christina Duncan's family that it might take her years to finish high school and she'd never graduate from college. They didn't know how much spunk and spark Faith-Christina had.

Hannah Wooten

After excelling in high school, Hannah Wooten stumbled in her first attempt at college. But when she transferred to Valencia College, she got the chance to start over – and along the way, she discovered her passion and her future career.  

Carolyn Harding

Decades after she was told she wasn't college material, Carolyn Harding decided to prove her doubters wrong and earns associate degree at 60 years old.

Wytosia McMillan

Valencia College celebrates 200,000th alumnus — and how she overcame obstacles in her path.

Christina Diaz

Valencia College grad Christina Diaz followed her mom's footsteps as a fire inspector; today, she's a fire marshal in Seminole County.

Reina Castellanos

Reina Castellanos wasn't sure what she wanted to do when she graduated from high school. But Valencia's graphic design program sparked her interest -- and she went on to earn her bachelor's and master's degrees in fine arts. In 2021, her work caught the attention of Target and her designs were featured during the store's national Hispanic Heritage Month campaign.

Emmy Torres

A teen mom, Emmy Torres dropped out of high school in her senior year. When her son stumbled in high school, she vowed to finish her diploma with him. She then marched to Valencia College – and is now working on her master's degree.

Nikolai Wolfe

College seemed out of reach for Nikolai Wolfe until a postcard about Valencia's Honors College arrived in the mailbox. Today, this Valencia grad is studying at prestigious Williams College.

Sheina Senat

Sheina Senat enrolled at Valencia so she could study at her own pace. Although she wants to be a cardiologist, she also became a college quiz bowl champion.