Columbia College graduates 74 students

EVERETT — The Marysville-Everett campus of Columbia College celebrated the graduation of 74 of its students at the Everett Performing Arts Center May 27, with dignitaries such as Naval Station Everett Commanding Officer Capt. Thomas Mascolo officiating the ceremony.

Thomas Larsen, director of the Marysville-Everett campus, explained that this year's crop of 11 students who received their master's degrees is up from the three students who received master's degrees last year.

"Much of it was just a matter of timing," Larsen said. "The master's degree program tends to take two to three years, which is about when most of these graduates started it, although it can stretch to many more years for those who need to accommodate other things in their schedules, since our students include employees of Boeing and the city of Everett, as well as members of the U.S. Navy."

At the same time, Larsen noted that Columbia College began offering masters of arts in teaching and masters of science in criminal justice degrees two years ago. May 27 saw Jessica Callagan receive the Marysville-Everett campus' first master of arts in teaching degree, and Arlington Police Officer Kenneth Thomas receive its first master of science in criminal justice degree. Larsen added that Callagan's husband, Mark, was in her graduating class and received one of the school's nine master of business administration degrees. Mark Callagan is an active-duty Naval officer who was recently transferred to Rhode Island, so neither he nor his wife were able to attend the graduation ceremonies.

"We've had steady increases in enrollment in our master's degree program," Larsen said. "Starting 18 months ago, students have been able to enroll both locally and online for courses toward their masters of business administration degrees, so that flexibility has helped students' schedules."

The Marysville-Everett campus of Columbia College also gave bachelor's degrees to 38 graduating students and associate's degrees to 25 graduating students May 27, which Larsen estimated were roughly similar to previous years' numbers of students to receive such degrees. Of this year's 74 graduates, Larsen further estimated that 85 percent were from Snohomish County.

"All of these students are adults, so they're studying while they work and raise families," Larsen said. "They've made education a priority in their already hectic lives, so they deserve to be congratulated for their perseverance."

The Marysville-Everett campus of Columbia College is located in Suite 802 at 13910 45th Ave. in Marysville. For more information, call 425-304-4480 or log onto

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