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Commencement Highlights Include Photography Major's Finish and Honorary Degrees
Austin Harmon is one of more than 310 students receiving their undergraduate degrees on Saturday at 11 a.m. at the Winthrop Coliseum.
President Anthony DiGiorgio also will present honorary degrees to S.C. State Senator Hugh Leatherman, R-Florence; Rock Hill Mayor Doug Echols and his wife, child advocate Sylvia Echols.
S.C. Sen. Hugh Leatherman
Mayor Doug Echols
ROCK HILL, S.C. - Senior Austin Harmon ran around the halls of
as a young child while her father worked to help build the university's
graphic design program
He is on her mind these days as she wraps up her Winthrop career.
passed away in 1993 of melanoma cancer, leaving behind a legacy during his five years that fellow professors and students remember today.
is one of more than 310 students receiving their undergraduate degrees on Saturday at 11 a.m. at the
President Anthony DiGiorgio
also will present honorary degrees to S.C. State Senator Hugh Leatherman, R-Florence; Rock Hill Mayor Doug Echols and his wife,
child advocate Sylvia Echols
Harmon of Rock Hill treasures a booklet about her father given out during a 1994 exhibition of his art at the
. There are sketches of his work and quotes from his wife, co-workers and students who remember a man of quiet confidence. They say he came to Winthrop when the design industry was constantly changing the evolution of desktop publishing, but instilled in his students a keen eye for design that computers can't replicate.
In his two daughters,
instilled a love of the arts.
came to Winthrop seven years ago, left during that time to pursue an associate's degree in photography from
Greenville Technical College
and returned to get her bachelor's degree in commercial photography. She is first to say she wandered from major to major - painting, theatre, etc.
Professors said she has blossomed in the last couple of years as she's discovered commercial photography, worked in video with an Atlanta internship, developed an appreciation for old cameras and participated in ham radio workshops. She counts among her supporters long-time fine arts professors -
- and newer Winthrop faculty/staff additions,
, Haney Howell and
She leaves with many skills and interests in several fields - photography, video and design. "I could be happy in any of them," Harmon said. Maybe she'll get a job in commercial photography, go to graduate school at
Rochester Institute of Technology
or work in forensic photography.
It isn't clear at this point where she's headed, but
leaves with her father's implicit blessing and her professors' loving guidance.
Also on Saturday, Winthrop officials will honor:
for his unwavering commitment to preserving the state's fiscal reputation, providing leadership during the Great Recession with passage of the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act and his pragmatic approach to sound policy.
for his vision for Rock Hill as an economic engine and sports center and his dedication to ensuring diversity among city offices, employees and boards and for providing strong mentorship to employees.
for her tireless work in advocating for York County children and to reminding city residents to remember the effect on children's lives as policies are created.
For more information, contact
, news and media services manager, at 803/323-2404 or e-mail her at
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