Commencement, for all Ivy Tech Community College staff and faculty, is our why. 

This single day, every year, is the culmination of patience, grace, hard work, and care. And most importantly, it is the result of dedication and perseverance  – despite all obstacles – on behalf of our students. 

Ivy Indy graduates face a wide variety of challenges and adversity every day. From graduates like 78-year-old Carol-Ann Lynch Marbach, who began her studies late in life, to Coby Simpson, a graduate who is a survivor of chronic myeloid leukemia, our students prove every day that with hard work and determination – it is possible. 

Simpson’s speech reads, in part:

“During my freshman year, I was diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia, an illness that threatened to derail my education and my life.

I am here today to tell you that even in the face of such adversity, resilience and determination can overcome even the most challenging circumstances. 

Throughout my diagnosis, treatment, and recovery, I learned the true meaning of resilience. I realized that the true measure of strength is not simply in the ability to endure but in the willingness to fight back, to rise again and again when knocked down. 

My experience with leukemia has taught me that even in moments of hardship, there is always a chance for growth, a chance to find new strength, and to become stronger and more resilient than before. 

And so, as we prepare to embark on our individual journeys beyond these walls, let us remember that adversity is inevitable, but it is our response to it that defines us. We must continue to be resilient in the face of challenges and setbacks, to have the courage to embrace the unknown and trust in ourselves that we are capable of great things.”

DuJuan McCoy, owner, president, and CEO of Circle City Broadcasting, the parent company of WISH-TV and WNDY-TV, was the 2023 Commencement Keynote Speaker, and he continued with the same theme of hard work and perseverance in his “American Warrior Speech.”

McCoy shared that Ivy Indy students are warriors. Despite adversity, our graduates have earned an associate degree, certificate, certifications, and most importantly, an education that can never be taken away from them.

McCoy’s speech reads, in part:

Warriors fight to the finish and they hustle. Just like you all did to get your degrees and graduate today! Congratulations Class of 2023 Ivy Tech Indianapolis campus students. 

You have all been warriors, so far, by completing this chapter of your life! Let’s not rest on our laurels and just say “I have my degree.” Let’s go put it to work and DREAM BIG!

We are so thankful for every person who helped our students reach this momentous occasion. 

Family, friends, professors, neighbors, board members, administrators – community in all – is what helped each of the 3,041 graduating students make it across the stage to their associate degrees and certificates.

The Ivy Tech Indianapolis Class of 2023 is 54% female, 45% male, and 38% students of color, with 50% receiving certificates or certifications and 50% receiving associate’s degrees.

And finally, as Simpson said during his speech, this is only beginning for the Class of 2023!

“Graduation is only the beginning of our paths, but I know that with the resilience and determination we have developed through our experiences, we will each achieve great things in the years to come.”

– Coby Simpson

About Ivy Tech Community College

Ivy Tech Community College is Indiana's largest public postsecondary institution and the nation's largest singly accredited statewide community college system, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Ivy Tech has campuses throughout Indiana and also serves thousands of students annually online. It serves as the state's engine of workforce development, offering associate degrees, long- and short-term certificate programs, industry certifications, and training that aligns with the needs of the community. The College provides a seamless transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana, as well as out of state, for a more affordable route to a bachelor's degree.