Ken McEwan, Ridgetown Campus director, shares a toast to the Class of 2020 while surrounded by special ‘Congrats in a Box’ packages ready to be mailed to graduates.

The University of Guelph’s Ridgetown Campus is celebrating 235 new graduates this summer.

“This class has been an honour to get to know, and I strongly believe they will make us proud as they enter the industry-related workforces they have chosen to pursue,” said Ken McEwan, Ridgetown campus director. “This group of students were required to adapt to an alternative delivery of classes, and I’m proud to say they made it to the finish line together.”

All U of G graduates received a red keepsake box adorned with the University’s crest on the lid and “University of Guelph” in gold lettering on the side to help students and their families celebrate the milestone.

For the Ridgetown Campus graduates, the box contained a folder with the graduate’s degree and souvenir program as well as a congratulatory video message featuring guest speaker and alumnus Brad Chandler, the Class of 2020 valedictorian, and administration and academic leaders.

In the video, Chandler, who is CEO of Hensall Co-op in Exeter, Ont., talks about the importance of learning to be an active listener and working in a team spirit when reviewing new ideas and strategies with colleagues. He also stresses the importance of building good relationships in all aspects of career, home and community life.

The Class of 2020 valedictorian, Robbie Jackson, an agriculture diploma graduate, shares memories as well as a message of appreciation to the teaching staff and families for their important roles.

“I wish each of these Ridgetown Campus graduates much success in their future lives and careers,” said Prof. Rene Van Acker, dean of the Ontario Agricultural College. “I also want to thank the parents, friends and teaching staff for the important roles they played in the students’ academic journeys, particularly in the last few weeks of their final semester.

“It’s also important to thank our generous donors for their continued support of our students.”

Through the Graduation Awards Program, the campus distributed almost $35,000 across 50 graduation award opportunities. Award recipients were selected for their achievements in academics, leadership and student life involvement.