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W.Va. governor delivers commencement address at Bluefield State College

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BLUEFIELD, W.Va. (WVVA) Gov. Jim Justice, (R) West Virginia, shared some of his secrets to success for students graduating from Bluefield State College on Sunday.

The governor was the commencement speaker before nearly 300 students were awarded degrees.

Justice was instrumental in helping to re-open dorms at the college after more than 50 years, pledging a million dollars in funding. The dorms were abruptly closed in 1968 after a bombing on campus.

"I could never be more proud than to do just that. 50 years we've been through."

The college's President, Robin Capehart, bestowed upon Gov. Justice an honorary degree for his efforts.

"Through the power invested in me through the Board of Governors at Bluefield State College, it's our honor to award you an honorary doctorate of human letters symbolizing the love and dedication you have demonstrated to Bluefield State and all mountaineers who are proud to enjoy this beautiful state."

During his commencement address, the Governor reminded students to recognize their successes in life but also their faults.

"Admit you're doing something wrong. If you can't genuinely do that, you'll hit your head on the wall for so long. You may get slightly better, but you're never get completely better."

But there is no way to fail without getting in the game, he said, as he encouraged students not to sit on the sidelines.

"You've got to want the ball in life. So Bluefield State, all you wonderful people and graduates, all the great people of this institution who made it work and made it come back to life."

Pres. Capehart also announced on Sunday that the Bluefield Regional Medical Center, acquired by the college in December 2020, will be named after Gov. Justice and his wife, Cathy.

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Annie Moore

Multimedia Journalist

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