Chairman of the University System of Georgia Board of Regents, Dr. C. Thomas Hopkins, will deliver the commencement address to the Gordon State College Spring 2017 graduating class.The event will be held May 12 at 8:30 a.m. on Lambdin Green at the center of campus.After the faculty and students are led onto Lambdin Green by piper Michael Grest, diplomas will be presented to the 300 candidates for graduation by Gordon State College President Max Burns. After receiving their diploma, the graduates will be welcomed to the Gordon State CollegeAlumni Association by Autumn Schaffer, a 2009 graduate of the education program.Graduates of the nursing program, their family and friends will gather in the Student Activity and Recreation Center immediately after graduation for the annual pinning ceremony.For those who wish to dine on campus, brunch will be served in Highlander Hall from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. The cost is $9.58 per person.This year, for the first time, graduates will be allowed to decorate their mortar boards.’This will add a fun aspect to graduation,’ said Tamara Boatwright, GSC spokesperson. ‘But students should be tasteful and respectful when selecting their mortar board embellishment.’The speaker, Regent C. Thomas Hopkins, Jr., MD, was appointed to the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia in 2010 to represent the Third Congressional District. He was named chair of the 19-member governing body for the USG in 2016 and will serve in that capacity through December 31, 2017.Hopkins is board certified in orthopaedic surgery and orthopaedic sports medicine and engaged in private practice in Griffin, as a partner of OrthoGeorgia. He served in the United States Air Force as a fighter squadron flight surgeon and orthopaedic surgeon. He is a board member of MAG Mutual Insurance Company and United Bank Corporation. His professional memberships include the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, Medical Association of Georgia, Georgia Orthopaedic Society where he has served as past president, Arthroscopy Association of North America, Spalding County Medical Society,and the Rotary Club of Griffin where he previously served as president. He has served on the Georgia Health Strategies Council and Governor’s Physician Partnership.Hopkins earned a bachelor’s degree from Valdosta State University, attended the University of Georgia and completed his medical degree and residency at Emory University. He and his wife, Sara, have two children and an infant grandson.