Vaughn College celebrated its 91st Commencement on Saturday, May 20 in the William R. DeCota Hangar with more than 200 graduates and their families. The conferring of master’s, bachelor’s and associate degrees in engineering, technology, management and aviation began with a welcome from Dr. Paul LaVergne, vice president of academic affairs followed by President Dr. Sharon B. DeVivo.  

Edwin J. Clark, Jr. ’91, Vaughn alumnus and vice president and general manager of the Boeing 737 program and Renton manufacturing site in Washington, delivered the commencement address and was awarded an honorary degree by the College. 

“Love life, challenge yourself and most importantly have fun,” said Clark. “Have passion for what you are doing, you are the CEO of your future and be curious every day. Be curious on how you can make a difference in this world,” advised Clark. 

Clark has more than 30 years of experience in the aviation industry. Prior to becoming vice president of the 737 program in 2021, Clark previously worked in numerous positions for the aviation sector including vice president of Global Technical Operations for Boeing Global Services and vice president of Commercial Services Program for Global Services. He is currently responsible for leading 13,000 people at Boeing in producing 31 airplanes a month to airlines around the globe to connect the world. He also holds an airframe and powerplant license from the Federal Aviation Administration. 

Alina Santander Vinokurova ’23, mechatronic engineering graduate and this year’s student speaker, reminded her peers of the challenges and resilience the class of 2023 faced during their time at Vaughn with the COVID-19 pandemic. She expressed gratitude for the College giving her the opportunity to travel across the United States and attend professional conferences, events and competitions.  

Vinokurova implored her class to push themselves beyond their perceived limits and explore uncharted territories. “I want to invite you, no matter where life takes you, to carry with you the memories you made here,” said Vinokurova. “So go out there, shoot for the stars, and make your dreams come true. Congratulations once again, Class of 2023!” 

President DeVivo closed the commencement ceremony by thanking the graduates for their contributions to the institution and wishing them well in the next chapter of their journey.  

“You have been challenged, you have been tested and you have prevailed,” said DeVivo. “Your degree is a testament to your abilities, and you will make every company and organization you join better.” 

Missed this year’s commencement? Rewatch the ceremony on our YouTube channel by clicking here. To view the 2023 Commencement program, click here.


Student speaker Alina Santander Vinokurova 23