Aiken Technical College Announces Plans for 2021 Commencement Ceremony
Aiken Technical College (ATC) will have its 2021 Commencement Ceremony on Tuesday, May 4 at 7 p.m. at the University of South Carolina Aiken Convocation Center, 2049 Champion Way, Graniteville.
In observance of COVID-19 safety protocols, in-person attendance will be limited, with each graduate receiving up to two tickets. Face masks will be required for attendees.
Other guests and community members are invited to participate in the event virtually via a live stream on the ATC website at www.atc.edu/graduation.
More than 340 graduates will receive credentials, including associate degrees, diplomas, and certificates. The College will also recognize its 2020-2021 faculty and staff members of the year.
Keyatta Priester, Community Development Manager with Aiken Electric Cooperative, Inc. (AEC), will be the keynote speaker for the ceremony. Her career includes about 20 years in the utility industry, and she is the first African-American woman to serve in her role with AEC.
Priester is no stranger to the College or its mission to provide educational and workforce development opportunities for the greater Aiken region. Since 2016, she has served as a Commissioner for ATC's governing board, the Aiken County Commission for Technical and Comprehensive Education. She was appointed to the board by former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley and re-appointed by South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster.
Known as a community leader, Priester is also involved in numerous local, state, and national organizations. Her activities have included the Association of Community College Trustees; Rotary International; Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.; executive board commissioner for the South Carolina Association of Technical College Commissioners; registered lobbyist for Electric Cooperatives of South Carolina; 2018 American Heart Association Heart Walk co-chair; United Way of Aiken County Campaign chair and executive board member; Women Leadership Council executive board member; Greater Aiken Chamber of Commerce board member; Leadership Aiken County; Tim Scott's John Moniz Champion of Hope advisory council; and the Aiken Partnership board member.
She has received many awards and recognitions for her efforts, including being named an Aiken Standard Young Professional to Follow inaugural honoree; United Way 2015 LIVE UNITED Award honoree; United Way 2016 Russ Foret Volunteer of the Year Award recipient; United Way 2018 LIVE UNITED Award honoree; United Way 2020 Hero Award honoree; WJBF Channel 6 Woman to Watch; and Paul Harris Fellow honorable recipient.
Recently, the United Way of Aiken County recognized Priester for her work to ensure local communities have the resources needed during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. She has been instrumental in organizing COVID-19 testing and vaccine sites, food box distributions, and advocating for rural Wi-Fi access.
For more information about the Commencement Ceremony, please visit www.atc.edu/graduation.