Crowder College holds a special place in Iris Wormington's heart. Not only did she graduate from the college on Saturday, but do did her grandmother years ago.

Crowder College holds a special place in Iris Wormington's heart. Not only did she graduate from the college on Saturday, but do did her grandmother years ago.
"My grandma (Nancy Stroud) actually came to Crowder the first semester that it was ever open for students to attend, that was in 1964," she said. "That has always been something that I felt was really unique about my family because a lot of times in the 60s, the opportunity for a lady to go to college was kind of rare, so I think that she kind of set the precedent for our family that education was attainable, but it was also something that you didn't have to go off to a huge university to get your start, just do whatever is in your means and whatever is practical for you. She went for general studies."
Wormington was the keynote speaker to both graduation ceremonies (10 a.m. and 1 p.m.) held on the Crowder College Neosho campus on Saturday. Wormington graduated with an associate of arts in general agriculture. She is a member of PTK and Delta Tau Alpha. Wormington earned a 3.95 GPA while at Crowder allowing her to graduate Magna Cum Laude. She plans to attend University of Arkansas and major in poultry science.
"I am from Monett, so Crowder was always really close to home, but also there is a really great Ag program here," she said. "A lot of great opportunities to travel and to get an inexpensive education, I would put Crowder's Ag program up against any of the universities around here just because there is a lot of hands on exposure and a lot of opportunities to get into industry exposure as well. So through Crowder, I have had the opportunity to do two different summer internships one as a freshman and one then this summer."
As far as how she decided on her field of study, Wormington said she grew up on a cattle, broiler farm.
"So there is a lot of diversity, but there is a lot of opportunity within a poultry science industry and it is more specific than just a general animal science or general Ag. Career outlook, job opportunity is a big thing for me, as well as the opportunity to travel within the United States and the world," she said.
Along with talking about her grandmother, Wormington also talked about how Crowder is home.
"All of the Southwest Missouri is small, when you think about all of the connections that Crowder has, it talks about Crowder being a home base," she said. "Small town people helping small town people because Crowder has been a beacon for so many people in the Four State area...I was a receipt of a foundation scholarship, and the donor of the scholarship was actually from the same town as my mother, they knew each other growing up. Everything is home, there are so many connections like you can't come to Crowder and not get connected because so many people, the faculty, the staff, everybody is reaching out to you, wanting you to get involved in making connections. I think that is one of Crowder's biggest attributes is how family oriented they are."
Asked what she will miss about Crowder, Wormington said, the people.
"I have a lot of people here that I knew from before I came to Crowder, a lot of just family connections and I think that has been a part of what has held me here because it is so family-oriented, those are people that i have known for the last 20 years of my life," said Wormington. "You leave home, but you find people that kind of replace that family that you left behind. Leaving Crowder is like leaving another aspect of developed family, even thought it as only been two years, you have friendships almost deeper than you did when you were growing up in elementary and high school. It is leaving all of those pieces behind, but it doesn't make it a bad thing, it is hard to do because there are so many connections here."