Vaughn College Celebrates the Class of 2024 at its 92nd Commencement Ceremony

Vaughn College's 92nd Commencement Ceremony on May 18, 2024, featured Capt. Houston Mills of UPS as the keynote speaker. Mills emphasized passion, perseverance, practice, and purpose for career success. Highlights included a welcome from Dr. Paul LaVergne, recognition of standout student Carla Vasquez Chavez, and an honorary doctorate for Mills. Special recognitions were given to high school students earning the Uncrewed Aerial Systems Certificate and a posthumous degree for Pablo Rivera. President Dr. Sharon B. DeVivo urged graduates to support future students and excel as Vaughn alumni.

FLUSHING, N.Y., May 28, 2024 Vaughn College Celebrates the Class of 2024 at its 92nd Commencement Ceremony

President of Flight Operations and Safety for UPS Delivers Commencement Address

Flushing, New York (May 23, 2024) – Passion, Perseverance, Practice and Purpose were the four "Ps" and keys to a successful career according to Vaughn College's Commencement Speaker Capt. Houston Mills. Mills spoke on Saturday, May 18, as the Class of 2024 celebrated its annual commencement ceremony.

Dr. Paul LaVergne, vice president of academic affairs, extended a warm welcome to all attendees as he introduced the senior administrators, department chairs and student speaker, Ms. Carla Vasquez Chavez, a distinguished recipient of a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering. Vasquez Chavez was honored with the prestigious Board of Trustees Award in recognition of her exceptional academic accomplishments and dedicated service to the institution.

Speaker Mills, president of Flight Operations and Safety for the United Parcel Service (UPS) is also a former United States Marine Corps officer and F/A-18 fighter pilot. He shared insights from his extensive aviation career and encouraged graduates to embrace opportunities with courage and resilience. Mills was awarded an honorary doctoral degree for his service to his country, aviation safety and for inspiring the next generation.

"Class of 2024, I have the utmost confidence that Vaughn College of Aeronautics and Technology has provided you the tools to succeed", expressed Mills. "It's now up to you… to let passion guide you to dream big – to learn to fail fast and bounce back with a preserving spirit no obstacle or setback can hold down… to leverage practice to deter your doubts and fears and grow confidence… and to live a purpose-driven life that brings you meaning and joy while being the difference the world needs."

President and Chief Executive Officer Dr. Sharon B. DeVivo highlighted the College's commitment to academic excellence and student success. She recognized the faculty, board of trustees and industry partners for their contributions to Vaughn's vision to change the world one student at a time with a transformative education that leads to a lifetime of opportunity. "Graduates as you make your way in the world, please remember to reach back and support the next generation of Vaughn students who will rely on those industry connections to help them define their career pathway," said Dr. DeVivo.

During the ceremony, special recognition was given to a group of high school students who attended the ceremony and received the Uncrewed Aerial Systems Certificate. A posthumous degree was awarded to Pablo Rivera, an aviation maintenance student whose family was in attendance to accept his degree. Additionally, outstanding students were acknowledged for their educational excellence and contributions to the College community in clubs, competitions and degree programs.

As the ceremony concluded, Dr. DeVivo congratulated the graduates and emphasized the importance of staying connected as Vaughn alumni. She encouraged them to continue pursuing excellence in their careers and to be ambassadors for the College in their professional endeavors.

VAUGHN COLLEGE: Founded in 1932, Vaughn College is a private, nonprofit four-year college that enrolls more than 1,100 students in master's, bachelor's and associate degree programs in engineering, technology, management and aviation on its main campus in New York City and online. The student-faculty ratio of 14 to 1 ensures a highly personalized learning environment. Ninety-eight percent of Vaughn College graduates, 78 percent in their field of study, are employed in professional positions or choose to continue their education within one year of graduation. The institution serves many first-generation college students and is recognized by the US Department of Education as a Hispanic-Serving Institution. In a study conducted by The Equality of Opportunity Project, and reported in The New York Times, Vaughn was ranked number one in upward mobility nationwide. For more information on Vaughn College, please visit