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Largest graduating class from TJC is ready to make an impact in their fields

I've met wonderful people at the hospital and they've also been my 'why', I do this for all the people I care about."

TYLER, Texas — Graduation season is officially here, which means several graduates will be pursuing their careers in the healthcare industry. 

On Friday, May 13th, Tyler Junior College had the largest graduating class, with a record-breaking number of 1,245 graduates that earned 1,448 degrees and certificates.

Despite the obstacles these students faced throughout their college years, their passion for helping people never diminished. 

"I've worked in healthcare and I've watched how it's changed over these years and the one thing is you have to keep positive and remember why you're doing it," Tyler Dunford, TJC Graduate of Nursing said.

Tyler's family is the inspiration behind his why to pursue his career in healthcare. 

"I ended up stepping into this career due to my grandmother," Dunford said. "She had leukemia and she passed away when I was 14 years old and um…she believed me when no one else did."

For graduate students like Jakayla Freeman, she says her family is her inspiration behind her 'why' in her field of study. 

"I have two special needs sisters, one has down syndrome and one has autism," Jakayla Freeman, Graduate in Occupational Therapy said T. "They're the ones that inspire me to become an occupational therapist."  

Tyler and Jarkayla are looking forward to furthering their education by pursuing their bachelor's degree while also working in their field of study in healthcare. 

I've met wonderful people at the hospital and they've also been my 'why', I do this for all the people I care about and you just never know what people are going through and I want to make a difference in their life," Dunford said T. 

While also hoping to inspire others and make a difference. 

"I'm just ready to treat patients and see a difference in somebody you know, make a difference and change someone's life and make somebody do things that they couldn't do before or create an opportunity to regain something they lost," Freeman said.

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