Chemeketa Community College graduates wave to audience members as the 2019 ceremony begins (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Winemakers, adult high school graduates, formerly homeless students and military veterans were among the 700 students who walked across the stage at Chemeketa Community College's graduation on June 18 at the Oregon State Fairground Pavilion.

Before handing students diplomas, retiring Chemeketa President Julie Huckestein asked those in the class who are the first in their family to graduate college to stand. About 100 did as cheers erupted from the audience.

Many of the graduates are going on to four-year colleges and universities with an Oregon Transfer diploma.

Some, ranging in age from teenagers to near-retirement, are graduating with a high school diploma or GED.

High school program graduates file into the ceremony (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Many graduates decorated their caps with motivational quotes, jokes, or tributes to family and culture. (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Neva Hutchinson, Chemeketa board president, speaks to students at graduation (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

College program graduates walk to their seats (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Many graduates decorated their caps with motivational quotes, jokes, or tributes to family and culture. (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Technology graduates decorated their caps with electronics. (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Raymond Phipps reads graduates' names (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Chemeketa graduates stand as the ceremony begins (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Many graduates decorated their caps with motivational quotes, jokes, or tributes to family and culture. (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Chemeketa President Julie Huckestein stands with retiring faculty member Roger White, who taught in the Chemeketa electronics program for 46 years. (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

High school program graduate file into the ceremony (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)Graduates stand to signify which Chemeketa campus they attended classes at (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

President Julie Huckestein leads the Pledge of Allegiance (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Many Class of 2019 graduates will continue their college education at four-year universities. (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

College program graduates walk to their seats (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Voices of Chemeketa members sing the college's alma mater during graduation. (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

College program graduates walk to their seats (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Many graduates decorated their caps with motivational quotes, jokes, or tributes to family and culture. (Rachel Alexander/Salem Reporter)

Have a tip? Reporter Rachel Alexander: [email protected] or 503-575-1241.

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