When Cindy Wegman of Brainerd was working toward a certificate from Central Lakes College, she didn't realize she'd be participating in a graduation ceremony with her daughter, Megan.
Cindy and Megan Wegman joined about 400 CLC students Wednesday during a Brainerd campus commencement program at Brainerd High School.
Cindy Wegman said, "I always hoped when she graduated that I'd be in the audience taking pictures. Maybe next time."
Wegman earned her associate of arts degree and a certificate in Microsoft office last year and this year she earned a help desk specialist certificate.
Megan Wegman (left), Brainerd, received a hug from her mother Cindy Wednesday after the Central Lakes College graduation ceremony of Brainerd campus students in the Brainerd High School gymnasium. Brainerd Dispatch/Clint Wood
Megan Wegman, a 2003 Brainerd High School graduate, earned an associate in arts degree. She intends to continue her education in order to pursue a career as a veterinarian technician.
"It's interesting," said Wegman about graduating with her mother. "We've had several classes together so I guess this would be the next step.
"But it is OK. I'm closer to my mom than most people are."
The Wegmans were able to study, have lunch and drive to school together during their time at CLC.
The mother and daughter were competitive in their grades. Both graduated with honors and Cindy Wegman said, "We're still fighting."
They said their competitive nature caused them both to work hard in their classes in order to do their best.
Cindy Wegman also dedicated her photography work that is displayed in the CLC gallery to her daughter.
Sonja Munns waved to a son as she waited to receive her degree during the Central Lakes College graduation ceremony of Brainerd campus students Wednesday night in the Brainerd High School gymnasium. Munns has three sons. Brainerd Dispatch/Clint Wood
When Christopher Schlagel of Brainerd and Dawn Tillson of Pine River began their studies at CLC they did not know each other. When they graduated Wednesday they were family.
Schlagel met Tillson's daughter, who also attends CLC, at the college last summer. They married over spring break and now are expecting a baby.
"It's kind of strange," said Schlagel about graduating with his mother-in-law.
Tillson said, "I thought it was funny. I'm an old lady and I'm graduating with the young kids."
Tillson said she was able to watch her daughter fall in love with Schlagel.
Schlagel received his associate of arts degree. Tillson earned a registered nursing degree.
CLC had 826 students who earned a degree this year and about half participated in the ceremony. During the ceremony, CLC President Joe Birmingham welcomed the students, asked them to stay in touch and wished them success in their careers.
Guest speaker Vincent Ijioma, board trustee with the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system, urged the students to have faith when applying for jobs and to believe in themselves.
JENNIFER STOCKINGER can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 855-5851.
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