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Rinker to speak at IVCC convocation

Dr. Caitlin Rinker, a partner at Novak Rinker Veterinary Clinic in Ottawa, will speak at Illinois Valley Community College’s 11th annual New Student Convocation Tuesday, Aug. 14, in the Dr. Mary Margaret Weeg Cultural Centre.

The 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. event, required attendance for all incoming students, will also feature speeches from political science instructor Amanda Cook Fesperman, winner of the 2018 Stephen Charry Award for Teaching Excellence; Student Government President Xavier Braboy; and Student Trustee Joseph Marenda.

After the ceremony, students will participate in breakout sessions to discuss areas of concern, college expectations and support opportunities. The day concludes with a new student picnic in the cafeteria, Student Life Center and Cyber Café.

The free event will include activities, games, prizes and a chance to meet faculty and staff.

For information, call 815-224-0361.

Rinker is a distinguished IVCC graduate. In 2011, she was named one of the top 20 community college students in the nation by Phi Theta Kappa, the honorary society for two-year colleges.

In addition, she was the IVCC Foundation’s 21st Century Scholar, co-winner of the Frederick W. Matthiessen Award and a Thomas J. McCormack Scholar, the college’s top academic honor. She was also Student Government president.

She transferred to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, graduating with a biology degree in 2013. She completed veterinary school at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2017 and was selected from her graduating class of 75 to be one of three student speakers at commencement. Rinker grew up helping her father, Gus, raise cattle and chickens on their Grand Ridge farm and worked in her mother’s veterinary clinic.

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