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Holiversary Celebrates the Holidays and History...In Style

TMCC President Emerita Maria Sheehan and SGA President Darian Richards at the Holiversary.
Rebecca A. Eckland

What’s sparkly, red and lime green and "TMCC" all over? The answer: TMCC's Holiversary Event!

This year’s holiday party celebration also served as a venue for the official 50th Anniversary celebration. The festivities—named the “Holiversary”—happened on Monday, Dec. 6 in the Student Center on the Dandini Campus, and offered TMCC students, faculty, staff, and other guests from the community a chance to learn a bit about TMCC history while engaging in some old fashioned holiday fun. 

TMCC Student Government Association (SGA) President Darian Richards—also the winner of the Jolliest Sweater competition—served as event emcee, offering the audience tidbits that included the story behind the SGA, International Student Services, and TMCC’s first official ribbon cutting. Dr. Maria Sheehan, TMCC President Emerita, also offered memories from her tenure as President beginning in 2008 when a national financial crisis offered distinct challenges that she said were defining to the character of the college.

“While the economic crisis of that time was unlike any other in the college’s history, the fact that people turned to us here at the community college is no accident. For 50 years, students—people of all ages—have started their education and their search for better career training here,”  Sheehan said. “And they continue to choose TMCC… because of all of you, and your drive to ensure that they are prepared for wherever their goals take them next.” 

A Day of Celebration

The TMCC Holiversary was attended by Mollie Rose Lewis, a representative from the office of U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen, City of Sparks Councilwoman Dian Vanderwell, NSHE Regent Laura Perkins, NSHE Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs Crystal Abba, TMCC Institutional Advisory Board Chair BJ North, TMCC Foundation Board Past Chair Gigi Chisel, Treasurer Yanus Nelson and Fred Altmann. Reno Mayor Hillary Schieve, who was not able to attend, nonetheless wished TMCC a happy birthday via video to accompany a proclamation naming Sept. 20, 2021, as the official TMCC 50th Anniversary Day. 

In addition to the official program which offered memories, milestones and multiple perspectives, a Kahoot trivia game challenged participants with their knowledge of TMCC-trivia, asking questions that ranged from Count Dandini’s first name, the year Raggio Parkway was dedicated and—even—TMCC’s first mascot (pssst… it wasn’t Wizard the Lizard!

Holiday Sweaters, A (New) TMCC Tradition

The Holiversary also featured a (maybe not so long) TMCC tradition of awarding the jolliest and ugliest holiday sweaters to participants. Under the direction of holiday sweater official emcee Associate Vice President of Research, Marketing, Web Services and IT Elena Bubnova, participants were invited to show off their holiday sweaters to upbeat dance music. 

Because history was also a theme of the event, a “retro” division was added to the line-up. Several participants clad in tinsel, sequins, and flashing lights paraded across the festive stage, but ultimately emcee Richards would take the prize for the Jolliest sweater while Academic Affairs Executive Assistant Barbara Painter would win Ugliest Sweater. Dean Julie Ellsworth of the Life Sciences, Allied Health and Public Safety Division would win the retro sweater category. 

Check back with our anniversary website for more details of the ongoing celebration or send your alumni success stories to our Marketing and Communications team.