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Pima’s virtual graduation May 21

PTK student George Key is Commencement Speaker

Tucson, AZ – Pima Community College will have an online graduation event instead of the usual in-person ceremony, which it cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

What: Pima Community College Virtual Graduation 2020

When: 7 p.m., May 21, 2020

Details: Facebook event, @pimacccd, and livestream on YouTube, pimaccvideos

George Michael Key, a Phi Theta Kappa honors student graduating with multiple degrees, is the keynote speaker. He is receiving an Associate of Applied Science-Social Services, Associate of Applied Science-Substance Use Disorder Specialty, Associate of Arts-Social Services and Basic Social Services Certificate, as well as an Arizona General Education Curriculum-Arts Certification. He previously had earned certificates in substance use disorders specialty and social work.

Key, who also trained at the University of Arizona’s Integrated Healthcare Recovery Support Specialist Institution (IHRSSI), plans to purse bachelor’s and master’s degrees in social work through an Arizona State University accelerated program. Ultimately, he wants to earn a doctoral degree and develop an innovative modality of therapy to “catch individuals falling through the cracks.” He credits much of his success to the late Sharon “Del” Worley, whom he calls “mentor, friend, fellow.” Worley was a Pima instructor and Substance Use Disorders curriculum developer and co-owner of Southwest Institute for Group and Family Therapy.

“She kept me in the Pima Community College social work program by assuring me, that all we should expect of ourselves is to be and do the very best we can, in the place we are, at the very moment we are there,” Key said. “She heard me when I was quiet too.”

The May 21 event, with hosts encouraging live chat by grads and their loved ones, will feature inspiring recorded messages from Chancellor Lee D. Lambert and other members of the Pima community, including staff and alumni. In addition, Tucson Mayor Regina Romero will give a special message.

A total of 3,552 students have graduated or are candidates for graduation at the May ceremony. Students graduating from Pima in Summer or Fall 2019, or Spring 2020, or who plan to apply for graduation in Summer 2020 are considered to be in the Class of 2020.

The College expects to award 4,953 degrees and certificates to these students. Many Pima students earn more than one certificate and/or degree. A total of 163 of the 2,231 associate degree candidates, have a grade point average of 3.90 or greater, meeting the requirements for graduation with highest honors.

Virtual Graduation also will wrap in the annual Multicultural Convocation programming. This will add student representatives giving diversity-themed messages and the announcement of the College’s Diversity and Inclusion Awards, which has leadership, service and education categories.

The College still is exploring ways to offer the Class of 2020 an in-person ceremony, but that event won’t happen until 2021, said College Events Manager Christy Camargo.



Libby Howell, APR, Executive Director

Media, Government and Community Relations


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