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Dixie College conferred 885 degrees and certificates - the most ever - to graduates during its 81st commencement exercises Saturday morning at the Dixie Center Burns Arena.

"This is the largest graduating class ever," President Douglas Alder told the packed audience of families and friends. "A record number 587 associate degrees, an increase of more than 100 over last year, are being awarded today. This is the eighth consecutive major increase we've had in numbers of students graduating with associate degrees."Alder noted the number of re-entry graduates. "It's a sign that education is really becoming available to greater segments of our community."

Guest speakers Jon M. and Karen Huntsman addressed the graduates. Jon Huntsman is chairman of Huntsman Chemical Corp.

"A balance with family, vocation and religious ideals is vital to a successful life," Jon Huntsman said. "I can say to you the absence of any one of these criteria will make life difficult.

"Sweet are the uses of adversity. Every person has some in his life; not one of us will get through this life without adversity. When we face adversity and stumble, either we will be groaners and moaners, or we will lift ourselves up. It's what we do after diversity hits that matters."

Huntsman added that credit should be given others. "In all cases we should give credit where credit is due, and that's usually to other people."

Karen Huntsman urged graduates to live a life of service. "Let your good deeds be done quietly as you serve your fellow beings."

Marla Brinkerhoff and James Maxwell were valedictorians and also addressed the class.