There is nothing that a mother wouldn’t do for her child. It’s graduation season once again, and Sharonda Wilson is one proud mom – her son, Stephan, is set to graduate from college with a bachelor’s degree in fine arts in music theater from the Central Michigan University.
But it’s not only Stephan who’ll be receiving his diploma – his mother also earned her bachelor’s degree in business administration this year from Ferris State University!
Two graduating students in the same year is a family achievement that is truly worth celebrating. However, the mother and son had one problem: they were graduating on the same day.
But for Sharonda, the matter was nothing to fuss about. She wouldn’t miss her son’s graduation for anything, and as any mother would have done, she decided to forgo her own so she could be present at Stephan’s big day.
But what they didn’t know was that a special plan was in the works for them.
Days prior to the graduation, Stephan mentioned to a friend that his mom would miss her own graduation to attend his. The concerned friend wouldn’t let that happen, so he intervened and told Central Michigan’s president, Bob Davies, about their predicament.
Davies then contacted President David Eisler, his counterpart at Ferris State University, to see if CMU could confer Sharonda’s degree.
Ari Harris, the spokesman for Central Michigan, told CNN: “It was a very fast turnaround”.
Then, on Saturday, May 4, the pair walked across the main stage at Plachta Auditorium for Stephan’s graduation. In a video shared by CMU’s official Facebook page, Stephan can be seen helping his mom put on a crimson and gold graduation cap.
Moments after, Davies made a one-of-a-kind announcement that no one anticipated.
“I made a call today when I found this out, to David Eisler, the president of Ferris State University, so please pay attention,” the president began.
“By the virtue of the authority vested in me, by the state of Michigan and the board of trustees, on behalf of President Eisler and Ferris State trustees, I confer upon you, Sharonda Wilson, the bachelor’s degree that you have earned, with all rights privileges pertaining thereto. Please move your tassel from your right to your left,” he declared.
Naturally, the announcement was met with a loud cheer and standing ovation from the spectators. Stephan excitedly pumped his fist in the air as his mother moved her cap’s tassel. The mother and son duo celebrated their college graduation together, and it was such a beautiful and touching moment to witness!
“My mom has been so supportive of my education, and has been working so hard on her own educational journey. It was unbelievably special to share this moment together at commencement with her. I had been looking forward to graduation for a long time, but this was so much more meaningful than I could have imagined,” Stephan told Yahoo.
President Davies said that the unusual double grant of degrees was the right thing for him to do.
“The commencement ceremony is a celebration of student achievement and it acknowledges the passion, dedication and enthusiasm required to earn a college degree. Sharonda and Stephan both put in the long hours and hard work, and they deserved the chance to celebrate together as a family.
We appreciated the opportunity to partner with our friends at Ferris State to recognize and celebrate this milestone achievement for both Stephan and Sharonda,” he said.
Check out the incredible moment when President Davies conferred Sharonda’s degree.
For sure, this remarkable moment of graduating college together is one that they’ll keep in their memories for the rest of their lives.
Congratulations Stephan and Sharonda!