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Commencement 2012
TV's `Judge Alex' Ferrer Encourages
Grads to Take Chances
on't let others take away
your dreams! Remember, if a
little Cuban boy can hit the
ball, you can hit homeruns,"
advised Alex E. Ferrer better known as
TV's "Judge Alex" to MCC's Class of
2012. Ferrer gave the main address
before 1,249 graduates, their friends and
family during Commencement exercises
held May 24 in Lowell Memorial
Born in Havana, Ferrer was a baby
when his family fled to the United
States. He joined Florida's Coral Gables
Police Department at age 19 one of
the youngest police officers in the state.
While serving as a patrolman and
detective, he attended college and
law school.
Judge Ferrer received his law degree
from the University of Miami School of
Law, and practiced law in Miami. In
1995, at the age of 34, he became the
youngest judge and first Cuban-
American elected to Florida's Eleventh
Circuit Court. Ferrer left the bench in
2005 to host "Judge Alex," the popular
nationally syndicated courtroom TV
At every turning point in his career,
Ferrer said, pessimists would caution
him to play it safe and not take any
chances. But he refused to listen. "Ignore
people who say, `No you can't,' " he told
MCC's newest graduates. "Prove them
wrong never give up!"
Joseph Assenza and Sa-Marjie Sath, both of
Lowell, were student Commencement
speakers. Assenza is a former U.S. Marine
and veteran of the Iraq War. He
overcame a lackluster high-school
academic record, and a head injury
suffered in the war, to graduate at the
top of his class. Assenza plans to transfer
to UMass Lowell and major in civil
Sath also left her past struggles behind to
find success at Middlesex. Having grown
up in foster care and survived an abusive
past, she worked for five years after high
school before enrolling at MCC. Sath
plans to attend Suffolk University's
Sawyer Business School on a full
scholarship and pursue a bachelor's
degree in economics.
Katie Galenius (Class of 1996), Director
of the Older Battered Women's Program
at Greater Lynn Senior Services, was
presented with the 2012 Distinguished
Alumni Award.
Kathy Register
Happy graduates and their families joined Judge Alex E. Ferrer (far right photo), and
MCC President Carole Cowan and Board of Trustees Chairman William Chemelli
(bottom row, right photo) at May 24 Commencement exercises.