Action News helps grad get her special day

May 16, 2011 3:11:09 PM PDT
Getting a diploma on graduation day is one of the proudest moments in a student's career. But, for one local college senior, that almost didn't happen.

That is, until Action News stepped in to help.

"I'm ecstatic," said Mary Andricek, who learned on Monday afternoon that she will be allowed to graduate with her class at Salem Community College this week.

Mary was told she couldn't walk down the aisle at commencement because she missed the deadline for petitioning for the May graduation.

"I was home-schooled and I never had a high school graduation, so I wasn't really sure how the process worked or anything," Mary said.

Mary, who carries a 3.9 GPA, had been told she was in line to graduate in August, but without all of the pomp and circumstance that she wants so badly for her terminally ill mother, Ann Marie, to witness.

"It was just really important because this might be her only chance to see me," said Mary.

"My wife has a bucket list of 15 items," said Mary's father, Gerald. "Number 3 was to see Mary walk and to graduate here."

Action News was made aware of Mary's problem and contacted the college this morning. We were told to have Mary call the president's office for an appointment ASAP, which she did.

Dr. Peter Contini, president of Salem Community College, said there was a 'miscommunication' and Mary deserved to march on Wednesday night.

"We're all very thrilled with the president's decision and to let Mary graduate with her class," said Gerald.

"I'm thrilled, couldn't be happier," said Mary.