Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

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May 5, 2014

McGinnis great choice for ACTC keynote speaker

ASHLAND — Dr. Dwayne McGinnis will be the keynote speaker at Friday night’s Ashland Community and Technical College’s graduation ceremonies, and we can’t think of a better person to inspire graduates to go beyond the degrees they will earn from ACTC. After all, that is exactly what McGinnis did.

McGinnis graduated from Boyd County High School in 1985 and enrolled in Ashland Community College, as ACTC was then known. However, he had just begun his studies at the two-year college in Ashland when he joined the military. Perhaps armed with the maturity and discipline that often comes with military service, McGinnis enrolled in the community college after his military service and began a steady climb up the economic ladder.

In 1994, nine years after graduating from Boyd County High, McGinnis earned an associate in applied science degree from Ashland Community and Technical College. Two years later, McGinnis received his bachelor of science degree from the University of Kentucky, and in 2001, he received his medical degree from Marshall University’s  Joan C. Evans School of Medicine.

Today, McGinnis is an assistant professor at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, N.C., and is medical director of AirCare Critical Transport Service. He practices emergency medicine and is considered an expert in wilderness medicine, which focuses or medical problems and treatment in remote environments.

Our hope is that McGinnis’s story will inspire many of the newest ACTC graduates who hear him Friday night to continue their studies to earn four-year degrees and advanced degrees. After all, because of his military service, Dwayne McGinnis got something of a late start in his pursuit of advanced degrees, but he certainly has more than made up for the lost time.

A record number of 636 ACTC students will be recognized during Friday night’s graduation ceremonies. We suppose with the record enrollments ACTC has been experiencing in recent years, a record number of graduates should be expected, but nevertheless, in an area with a shortage of skilled workers, having more than 600 people equipped to go to work in a wide variety of fields or to go on to four-year colleges can only be a positive. Our hope is that former ACTC student Henderson Dwayne McGinnis will inspire some of the new graduates to continue their education far beyond the school in Ashland.

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Isaiah Caperton and Ryan Ratliff, both 12 years old, ride the Star Trooper on the midway at the Boyd County fair Tuesday. KEVIN GOLDY / THE INDEPENDENT

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