Thursday, May 23, 2019

Friday Summer Closure Reminder!

Rio mascot Splash on beach.  Text above reads "summer hours. Sign reads, "Closed Friday."

As a reminder, the Maricopa Community Colleges and most Rio Salado locations and services are closed Fridays during the slower summer months, until Aug. 2.

The following services are available on Fridays:
Services normally available 24/7 such as RioLearn, Technology Support Helpdesk, Ask a Librarian and will remain available. Students are also encouraged to use self-serve enrollment options at

The college will resume regular hours Aug. 5. Please visit our locations pages for details about hours of operation for each of our locations.

Please also note we will be closed Monday, May 27 in observance of Memorial Day.

Celebrate Jewish American Heritage Month!

Poster featuring images of Jewish American Illustrators.  Text: Jewish American Heritage Month

Jewish American Heritage Month is a time to recognize and celebrate the achievements of American Jews who have made contributions in fields ranging from sports and arts and entertainment to medicine, business, science, government and military service.

The 2019 theme is American Jewish Illustrators. 

The Rio Salado Library is proud to take part in this celebration and has created a guide that highlights some of the many American Jews who have helped create the nation's beloved children's books, iconic graphic novels and their superheroes, and syndicated comics and illustrations.

Check it out now!

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

GED® Grads Can Now Earn College Credits!

Image of Rio Salado GED grads at 2019 ceremony, lining up outdoors, around sunset.

GED graduates who have successfully completed their College Ready and College Ready + Credit coursework and tests can bypass placement testing, remedial coursework and earn college credits as Maricopa Community Colleges students!

Photo of a GED grad taking a selfie at a grad ceremony.  Banner above photo with digital media icons and text: #GEDGradDay

Made possible through a new partnership between the Maricopa Community Colleges District and GED Testing Service, students can now use their GED scores to demonstrate college readiness and college-level skills

The GED College Ready and College Ready + Credit scores are based on recommendations from the American Council on Education (ACE) Credit Program, the same program that backs CLEP and other advanced placement testing college credit recommendations. As is the case with these other programs, students may be eligible to receive college credit for courses aligned with GED test subjects.

“This is just one more way we can help students make the most of their time and resources—and increase their opportunities for college completion,” said Rio Salado Interim President Kate Smith.

The Maricopa Community Colleges District has joined a growing list of 225 institutions that have approved the GED College Ready score levels for college admissions.

GED Testing Service logo

“This new initiative is in perfect alignment with our adult re-entry programs, which are designed to help students learn the English language, prepare for successful GED completion and seamlessly transition to college,” said Smith.

Wide shot of Rio Salado May 2019 GED graduation ceremony

Rio Salado College, which is one of ten Maricopa Community Colleges, serves as the principal provider of GED test preparation programs for the District and the largest provider of adult basic education in the state of Arizona.

During the 2017-18 academic year, Rio Salado’s adult basic education departments served nearly 4,000 GED test prep students, and its testing centers administered 16,605 GED exams, serving as one of Arizona’s busiest GED testing centers.

Recent research has shown that GED programs are preparing grads for college programs. Since the launch of the enhanced GED program in 2014, a higher percentage of graduates are attending college programs, enrolling more quickly, and are more prepared than ever to succeed in college and beyond. Research conducted by GED Testing Service aligns with findings made by the National Student Clearinghouse:
  • 47% of GED grads enrolled in a college certificate or degree program within four years
  • 35% of GED grads enrolled in a college within one year of earning a GED credential
  • 90% of GED grads persisted by re-enrolling from one semester to the next
“The most recent numbers are very exciting, especially when you compare the 90 percent persistence rate to the pre-2014 rate of 29 percent,” said Randy Trask, President of GED Testing Service. "Education and credentials beyond a GED diploma are the keys to unlocking opportunity for adult learners--opportunities for new career pathways, higher wages, and better quality of life.”

Information about GED College Ready score levels is available here. Information about credit hours awarded for GED test scores is available here. Information about Rio Salado Testing is available here.

Learn more about Rio Salado’s GED test prep program at

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Enjoy Latest Commencement Photos!

Collage of images from graduation ceremony

We are delighted to share the latest photos from our May 2, 2019 commencement ceremony.

Feel free to download, share and tag! 

We will post more photos as they become available.

You can purchase additional images from GradImages. Photo proofs are available at

Congratulations Rio Waves!

Honoring Memorial Day, May 27

Poster for Memorial Day.  Text: Memorial Day Remember and Honor.  Maricopa Community Colleges will be closed on Monday, May 27th

Rio Salado and the Maricopa Community Colleges will be closed on Monday, May 27 in honor of Memorial Day.

Please also take note that the colleges and most Rio Salado locations will be closed on Fridays during the summer.

Memorial Day is observed on the last Monday of May to remember the brave men and women who sacrificed their lives while serving in the armed forces.

The National Moment of Remembrance Act was passed in 2,000 to “encourage the people of the United States to give something back to their country, which provides them so much freedom and opportunity.” 

The Act encourages all Americans to pause at 3 p.m. for a minute of silence on Memorial Day.

flags at half-mass, in front of Statue of Liberty at sunset

There is a traditional way of displaying the U.S. flag on this special day. 

The flag is raised quickly to the top of the staff and then lowered slowly to the half-mast position, where it remains until noon. It is then raised to full-staff for the remainder of the day. The half-staff position remembers the more than one million men and women who gave their lives in service to our country. At noon their memory is raised by the living.

Monday, May 20, 2019

Benefits of a Career in Senior Living

After getting your certificate of completion in Senior Living Management, there are numerous careers waiting for you in the senior living field. 

From resident caregivers to CNAs, seniors need a lot of people in their lives to ensure their golden years are truly golden. Perhaps you haven’t considered these options before, but they’re certainly worth thinking about. With numerous senior living jobs available, you may just find the perfect line of work.  

Outstanding Job Growth

It’s natural to want to get into a field you will be able to work in for the rest of your life. Fortunately, senior living employers are not going away any time soon. The aging population will only increase in the years to come with medical advances. According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the total number of home health aide jobs will increase by 47 percent between 2016 and 2026. Considering the average job growth for all jobs stands at 7 percent within the same timeframe, this is excellent growth to consider for a long-term career. The demand will increase as people live longer, and job-seekers can benefit greatly by getting into the field now.

A Multitude of Careers

When most people think of senior living jobs, they think about nurses at senior care facilities who supervise the residents. In reality, however, the truth is that there are numerous other jobs you can get in this field, which means that no matter what your passion is, you can find a way to express it in a field that matters. The exact job titles will vary according to region, but for the most part, you can find the following opportunities in this industry:

Facilities directors
Cooks and chefs
Office Managers
Nursing assistants
Wellness directors
Activities directors
Marketing directors
Sales managers
And more!

Mobile Work Options

You can certainly work at a nursing home if you want to, but working a regular 9-to-5 in the same place every day is not everyone’s cup of tea. If you enjoy work that is a little more flexible, then you may want to consider becoming an assistant living resident, a generally mobile position. You can go to different people’s homes to check up on them, make sure they’re safe, and provide care. Many people are bedridden but do not want to go to a nursing home for whatever reason, which gives you the freedom and flexibility to drive to different people’s homes every day, rather than work in an office or facility setting.

Heartwarming Stories

Working in this field give you the opportunity to aid an array of people in nursing homes. Some will be easier to work with than others, but one thing is consistent across the board: they will almost always want to talk with you. Many of them are eager to share their stories, tell tales about their life, and give advice. The sad reality is that many residents or patients may not always have family and friends coming in to see them, so you will be providing more than just care: you’ll be providing friendship. If you love television or going to the movies, then you’ll probably enjoy hearing a one-of-a-kind story from someone’s youth. You can learn so much from your residents, and with your help, their stories will live on for years to come.

Pay it Forward

Most parents do a lot for their kids, who aren’t always able to return the favor directly. Instead, consider paying it forward by working with the older generation and showing how much you care. Some seniors are not as independent as others, so you may need to do a lot of work for some patients, including feeding, bathing, and administering medication to them. Work up some good karma for yourself later in life; Mom and Dad will be so proud!

Numerous Training Programs

Working in this field give you the opportunity to aid an array of people in nursing homes. Some will be easier to work with than others, but one thing is consistent across the board: they will almost always want to talk with you. Many of them are eager to share their stories, tell tales about their life, and give advice. The sad reality is that many residents or patients may not always have family and friends coming in to see them, so you will be providing more than just care: you’ll be providing friendship. If you love television or going to the movies, then you’ll probably enjoy hearing a one-of-a-kind story from someone’s youth. You can learn so much from your residents, and with your help, their stories will live on for years to come.

There are other training programs available that will teach you CPR and other basic first aid techniques at no cost to you. These are great skills to learn and add to your resume. Not only can you apply first aid and CPR to patients at the facility or residence, but you will know what to do should an emergency arise in your everyday life.

High Level of Job Satisfaction

Out of all the senior living benefits, none are greater than the level of satisfaction you get from helping others. A major reason why many people get burnt out from their jobs is simply because they aren’t happy and don’t understand how they are making a difference in the world. When you assist senior citizens, every day is an opportunity to see how you make a direct impact on someone’s life. Your job entails making people smile and laugh and ensuring that they are happy and well-provided for. These jobs naturally come with their own set of challenges, but most people find that their passion is enough to keep them in this field for many years. After all, this is the perfect opportunity to leave at the end of each day with a smile on your face and the knowledge that you brightened someone’s day.

There are numerous benefits to helping senior citizens. For people who are still unsure about where their passion lies, they should consider joining this industry. You can get the education you need to excel in this field with Rio Salado College. Contact us today to get started!   

Insurance Studies Summer Camp Starts June 10!

Insurance Studies Summer Camp Header Graphic

Explore a career in insurance, meet with industry professionals, and earn 3 credits toward your Certificate of Completion (CCL) in Insurance Studies with our Insurance Studies Summer Camp, starting June 10!

Insurance professionals are the first to admit that when they were young, they never dreamed of working in the insurance industry. Once they started their insurance careers, however, they quickly realized this industry offers competitive pay and benefits, diverse career paths and growth potential, and a unique opportunity to help others when they need it most.

This hybrid INS100: Insurance Industry Profession course will give you the chance to see what your career path could look like in this thriving industry. Classes will be held in-person at Rio Salado College - Tempe on Mondays from June 10 to July 1 and will continue in an online format until Aug. 3. Light snacks and lunch will be provided.

In-Person Schedule (June 10, 17, 24, and July 1)

9:00am - 9:30am       Networking (Light Snacks Provided)
10:00am - 11:00am   Lecture/Activity
11:00am - 1:00pm     Guest Speaker Presentation
1:00pm - 1:30pm       Lunch with Guest Speaker (Lunch Provided)

Best of all, scholarships are available here, which means the program could be completely paid for!

To register, simply add INS 100 Section #18821 to your summer schedule. For questions, please contact Insurance Studies Faculty Chair, Dr. Lily Davidov at

Friday, May 17, 2019

Here’s to the HSE #RioGrad Class of 2019!

YouTube snapshot of graduation ceremony

We celebrated the accomplishments of 200+ students who have successfully completed Rio Salado’s GED® test prep classes and passed the GED® test at our annual HSE Graduation Ceremony, Thursday, May 16 at North Phoenix Baptist Church in Phoenix. 

Photo of Hoffman on stage shaking hands with a new HSE graduate

The ceremony was held on #GEDGradDay—a nationwide celebration to recognize the accomplishments of new GED® graduates-- and to inspire other adult re-entry students to fulfill their potential.

Among the guests at this year’s event was Arizona Department of Education’s new Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman, who shared inspirational remarks with guests. Watch her speech now

Rio Salado College serves as the principal provider of GED test preparation programs for the Maricopa Community Colleges and the largest provider of adult basic education in the state of Arizona.

Snapshot of Cuevas at graduation ceremony delivering his speech

This year’s HSE Student Speaker was Javier Cuevas, who decided to earn his HSE diploma to improve his career prospects. 

There are many things in a person’s childhood that can forever shape their future: parents, neighborhoods, peer pressure, cultural and societal influences. All of these left an imprint on Javier Cuevas.

“Growing up in a bad neighborhood takes its toll on the youth,” Cuevas said. “The influences, the peer pressure, the need to fit in. I was never a bad kid. I just made the wrong friends.”
Photo of Cuevas in cap and gown at Rio Salado Tempe

After spending time in juvenile detention, Cuevas had to drop out of high school to move to Mexico with his father.

“I was a 15-year-old American kid living in the most dangerous city in Mexico,” Cuevas said. “One day, a car pulled up on the curb. A man jumped out with a shotgun and pointed it to my head. I thought this was it. It seemed that time froze. Suddenly the driver yelled out, ‘it isn't him’ and sped off.”

The next year Cuevas returned to the U.S. to live with his mother. He had to re-start high school as a 16-year old freshman but caught up to being a senior in two years. However, he dropped out again when he learned he was going to be a father.
“As an adult, I learned that it’s extremely difficult to find a decent job without a diploma,” Cuevas said. Working long hours with low pay and stressing over how to pay bills led Cuevas to finally earn his high school equivalency diploma.
Cuevas credits Rio Salado College for helping him reach his goal.

“The friendly demeanor of the teachers made it easy to adapt and feel comfortable making mistakes,” Cuevas said. “They understood the struggle of balance between work, family, and school. I wouldn’t be here without them.”

Cuevas also thanks his family for seeing him through school.
“I want to thank my wife, who motivated me to go back to school, and my mom, for not giving up on me and being here tonight to see me graduate.”
Cuevas plans to continue his education by studying music business at Mesa Community College.

Thanks to Maricopa Community Colleges Television, you can watch Cuevas speech now and the entire graduation ceremony at

We encourage you to share your grad stories using #GEDGradDay #RioGrad.

Event Photos 
We will share event photos as soon as they’re available via our Facebook account. Additional photos are available for purchase by GradImages® at 

Learn more about Rio Salado’s GED® test prep program at

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Phoenix Fan Fusion: Inspiring Education

Image result for phoenix fan fusion

The Phoenix Fan Fusion is Thursday, May 23 - Sunday, May 26, 2019, at the Phoenix Convention Center. Our Dual Enrollment Team will be representing! 

Phoenix Fan Fusion has a long history of bringing real science to our favorite shows, comics and movies. K-12 students, including many current Dual Enrollment students, will be at Fan Fest this year soaking up their favorite fandoms and learning the science behind them.

Workshops this year will be highlight STEM workshops, biology, psychology, astronomy and much more. Some of the workshops include "Simply Electrical Signals Interpreted by Your Brain: The Ethics of VR," "Adventures and Disasters in Science: How Does Science Get Done Anyway?," and "Cellpai Noticed me!: Science of Cells at Work." 

Our Dual Enrollment team will provide information to various workshops about how Dual Enrollment can help a high school student's academic career.  One of the workshops that will help highlight Dual Enrollment will be "6 Universal Truths of all Successful STEM K-12 Programs," presented by Shawn Hardina on Thursday.

Dress up as your favorite sci-fi charter and join us at the Phoenix Fan Fusion!

Phoenix Fan Fusion

May 23 - 26, 2019

Phoenix Convention Center

100 North 3rd Street

Phoenix, Arizona 85004

Monday, May 13, 2019

Friday Summer Closures Begin May 17

Rio mascot Splash on beach, sign reads, "Friday summer closures!"

The Maricopa Community Colleges and most Rio Salado locations and services will be closed on Fridays, May 17- Aug. 2 in an effort to conserve energy during the slower summer months.

The following services will be available on Fridays:
Services normally available 24/7 such as RioLearn, Technology Support Helpdesk, Ask a Librarian and will remain available. Students are also encouraged to use self-serve enrollment options at

The college will resume regular hours Aug. 5. Please visit our locations pages for details about hours of operation for each of our locations.

Have a great summer!

Friday, May 10, 2019

Hiring Hub for #JobSeekers 16-24, May 14

Poster for event, featuring a group of young people smiling.  Text in blog.

Here's a great opportunity for job seekers ages 16-24! Opportunities for Youth is hosting a Digital Hiring Hub at our Northern location in Phoenix, May 14 to provide free resume and job application guidance. 

Register now:

We are proud to join Opportunities for Youth, the Maricopa Community Colleges and other community partners n this effort to help Maricopa County youth find gainful employment.

Free and open to all job seekers ages 16-24!

Tuesday, May 14, 2019
2-6 p.m.

Rio Salado College - Northern 

1715 West Northern Avenue
Phoenix, AZ, 85021

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Free Dental Clinic for Kids June 22!

Poster for Give Kids a Smile Dental Clinic, featuring dental students and young paients.  Text in blog.

The Rio Salado Dental Clinic will host a free clinic for children and teens ages 17 and younger on Saturday, June 22, 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Students, instructors and support staff will volunteer their time and expertise to provide comprehensive dental hygiene care to more than 100 children at the free clinic.

Register now for guaranteed service by calling 480-377-4100 or emailing

Baby smiling at doctor, holding a tooth brush.

Services Available
Services include exams, X-rays, cleaning, fluoride varnish, and educational tips on staying healthy. Each child will also receive a wellness goodie bag to take home. Walk-ins are welcome and will be accommodated if time and space permit.

logos for Arizona Dental Foundation and American Dental Foundation
This June 22 clinic is made possible in part by the Arizona Dental Foundation and American Dental Association.

Rio Salado Dental Clinic for Kids
Saturday, June 22, 2019
7:30 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Rio Salado College Dental Clinic
2250 W. 14th Street
Tempe, Arizona 85281

Remember, tooth decay is almost entirely preventable with good oral hygiene and regular check-ups!

Dental student showing a young girl how to brush

The Rio Salado Dental Clinic provides quality preventive dental hygiene services at discounted rates for the public all year longFor more information, call 480-377-4100 or visit

Veteran Student Hiring Expo May 16!

snapshot from PipelineAZ web landing page.  Image of a veteran talking to an employer.  Text: PipelineAZ Veteran Student Hiring Expo.  This is not a career fair.  all candidates are pre-matched for interviews to be conducted the day of the event.

Here's a great opportunity for transitioning military, veterans and military families in search of employment!

Join the Maricopa Community Colleges and PipelineAZ on May 16 to explore the possibilities! Meet with employers who value your skills and experience.  Don’t have a resume? Use the step-by-step resume builder to quickly create one. All candidates are pre-matched for interviews to be conducted the day of the event.

Registration deadlines
Job Seekers: May 10, 2019
Employers: April 15, 2019

Veteran Student Hiring Expo
May 16, 2019
9 a.m. - 4 p.m

GateWay Community College
Central City Campus
Community Room 
1245 E. Buckey Rd. 
Phoenix 85034

Let's Get to Work!

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

2012 #RioGrad Jennifer Papworth Pays it Forward

snapshot of Papworth at commencement lectern

Among the guest speakers at our 2019 commencement ceremony on May 2 was Rio Salado alumni Jennifer Papworth, who graduated in 2012. Listen to her speech now.

After graduating from Rio Salado with an Associate Degree in Public Administration, Papworth transferred to Arizona State University where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Public Service and Public Policy.

As a Rio Salado student, Papworth served as president of the college's Phi Theta Kappa Omicron Beta Chapter and earned several scholarships from the Maricopa Community Colleges Foundation.

Photo of Papworth

“I chose Rio because I still had one child at home and wouldn’t have to pay for childcare,” Papworth said. “Online classes fit into my schedule and meant that I didn’t have to spend time away from my husband and kids.
As a community leader, Papworth served on the Avondale Elementary School District Governing Board for five years, worked as an accredited La Leche League Leader and advised on local political campaigns.

Today, she is a Federal Relations Manager in the Office of Government and Community Engagement at Arizona State University.

Papworth said that the key to being a successful online student is the same as being a traditional student. “Plan your time wisely, keep your mind open and enjoy the learning experience.”

Monday, May 6, 2019

Reflections of 2019 Commencement

Collage of graduation photos featuring students at May 2 commencement ceremony

A record number of Valley high school students and a mother and son who are completing their degree programs simultaneously were among the class of 2019 college graduates who celebrated at Rio Salado College’s commencement ceremony at Comerica Theatre in Phoenix on Thursday, May 2, 2019.

Interim Rio Salado President Kate Smith
with Dual Enrollment Grads
Among the 200+ graduates in attendance were approximately 103 dual enrollment students, who represent the 187 high school students who have earned or on track to earn associate degrees during the 2018-2019 academic year. Students attend Deer Valley, Heritage, Brophy College Prep, Desert Vista, Horizon, Mountain Pointe and Xavier College Prep in the Phoenix metropolitan area and Corona del Sol, McClintock and Tempe high schools in Tempe. 

“We had just one dual enrollment graduate seven years ago,” said EJ Anderson, director of Rio Salado College’s dual enrollment program. “Today, no other college in the state has as many dual students or graduates.”

Rio Salado serves approximately 7,000 dual enrollment students at 37 Valley high schools, providing in-person, college-level instruction at each school so students can get a jump start on earning college credits, certificates and degrees.

Anderson says teachers and parents have played a key role. “Parents are usually the ones to convince students to take advantage of the cost savings, seamless university transfer options, time savings and other benefits of our dual enrollment programs.” Dual enrollment credits transfer to Arizona public colleges and many colleges and universities across the country.

Dylan Dixon
Among the Tempe McClintock High School dual enrollment students was Dylan Mitcham who is on track to earn an associate of arts and associate of science in general studies this summer.

“My mom convinced me and we both thought it would be a great opportunity,” said Mitcham. “I’ve been able to get my degree very early. It also means I don’t have to take that many classes at college – all around it’s pretty awesome.”

Mitcham is also a Rio Salado Achieving a College Education (ACE) Youth Scholar, a program designed to help high school students-- who may not otherwise have the means to attend college-- prepare for and succeed in their academic pursuits.

“Dylan could not have done this without the ACE Puente scholarship,” said Mitcham’s mother, Gigi Dixon Mitcham. “From the moment that they accepted his essay… amazing things were happening and will continue to happen.”

“I’m pretty proud of myself,” said Mitcham, who plans to attend Arizona State University’s Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering as a computer science major. “I’m glad that I was smart enough to take that opportunity because it’s really helped me, especially with my computer science degree that I’m planning on getting. Since I already have the associate (degree) I’m basically halfway done toward a bachelor’s, so I have extra time and don’t have to spend so much on college.”

Gigi Dixon Mitcham and Dylan Mitcham
Mitcham attended the graduation ceremony with his mother, who is also on track to earn her Associate of Arts in General Studies this summer. Dixon Mitcham said she was inspired to return to school because of her son. “I thought it would be wonderful to have that experience together and to graduate together.”

Dixon Mitcham has been teaching K-5 reading intervention at Tempe’s Nevitt Elementary School for the last ten years and has enjoyed a lifelong career as a musician.

“I was a full-time musician my whole life up until I worked at Nevitt… playing 5 nights a week-- traveling around the country, recording out in Nashville and writing songs… piano, guitar, singing—all of it,” said Dixon Mitcham, who still performs once a month at the San Tan Flats. “I’ve had quite a life, which makes me more proud to finish this part of it, or have this be a stepping stone for more education.”

She said Rio Salado’s Dual Enrollment Early College Success Coach Robert Brown “played a great role in motivating me and keeping me on track and helping me register for the right courses.”

“This is one of those memorable graduations,” said Brown. “I normally work exclusively with high school students, and this year I had the honor and privilege to help this family reach their educational goals together.”
“We feel extremely blessed to be part of this family and part of Rio Salado and the ACE Puente program,” said Dixon Mitcham. “I just don’t know where we would be without it right now. And because of Dylan being part of it, he encouraged me at my age to finish something I started many decades ago. My road led me to a different place but I ended up back here with my son which is amazing. It’s heartwarming.”
Dixon shares a great deal in common with other Rio Salado students, many of whom are parents, working full-time and returning to school to get ahead and be good role models for their kids. Her advice to adults who are considering returning to school: “Go for it. Don’t be afraid. Learn you must. I’m sure that’s a quote by Yoda from Star Wars. And as I like to say to all my students at the elementary school, you are smarter than you think. That is my mantra; you are smarter than you think-- in every situation.”

Snapshot of story on web site, featuring photo of Gigi and Dylan dressed in cap and gown.  Text: Mother, son graduate college together in Phoenix

This Arizona Family 3TV CBS 5 story by reporter Spencer Blake provides some additional insights about the Mitcham family’s educational journey.

Gigi and Dylan Mitcham represented nearly 2,500 Arizona graduates and more than 100 graduates from across the country who are expected to earn more than 3,000 degrees, certificates and credentials from Rio Salado College during the 2018-19 year*.

For more details about Rio Salado’s dual enrollment program, visit

Check out the first set of commencement photos by visiting this Facebook album. You will also have an opportunity to purchase images from GradImages. Photo proofs will be available at

A big thank you to all the graduates, guests, faculty and staff who helped to make Thursday’s graduation ceremony a magical, memorable night. We are so proud of you, #RioGrad #Classof2019—and honored to be of service to you and your family. We admire your perseverance and commitment to higher learning. Congratulations!

*FY2018-19 awards data as of April 30, 2019.

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Meet 2019 #RioGrad Student Marshal Kari Reinhart

Photo of Kari in grad cap and gown

Rio Salado’s 2019 Commencement Student Marshal is Kari Reinhart, an honors graduate, a single mother, dog lover and long-distance runner. And if that wasn’t enough, Reinhart also worked two jobs to help her dream of graduation become a reality.

“I have persevered by using every possible spare moment to study, research and write,” Reinhart said. “It is an amazing feeling of accomplishment of attaining my goal while providing a living breathing example for my child to never underestimate yourself.”

Reinhart’s academic accomplishments include being a member of the National Society of Leadership and Success, and the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society.

“I owe my success to my brother for convincing me to go back to school, and my daughter for giving me a reason to make a better life for the two of us,” Reinhart said.

Reinhart is earning an Associate Degree in Administration of Justice and is already working in that career field.

“The most enjoyable part of my current job is working with law enforcement canines and military working dogs,” Reinhart said. “It is my goal to continue down this path in some capacity full-time.” 

Get the latest news about our graduation ceremony, including a downloadable event flier. And don’t forget to download your grad badge.

Learn more about Rio Salado’s Administration of Justice program at

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Graduation Snapchat Filter, Live Stream and More!

Poster for snap chat.  Images of students keyed into filter, which includes image of Rio Salado mascot, Splash with text: I made it happen.  Text: Oh Snap! We have a filter.  Download Snapchat to use it.

Can you feel it? T-minus one day before our 2019 graduation ceremony! Woohoo! 

We look forward to celebrating your special day with you and your loved ones. Here are a few reminders to help you prepare. 

Oh Snap!
Commemorate your memories by downloading our Snapchat commencement filter on graduation day, May 2, as you make your way into Comerica Theatre.

Event flier.  Download at

Watch the ceremony on YouTube!
We will have a live stream of the event, courtesy of MCTV. Share this link with family and friends so they can tune in:!

Closing early!
As a reminder, Admissions, Records and Registration, Advisement and Financial Aid services will be closing at 5 p.m., Thu., May 2 to prepare for the commencement ceremony. We will resume regular business hours, Friday, May 3. Please plan accordingly. 

Event News!
Get the latest news about our graduation ceremony, including a downloadable event flier. And don’t forget to download your grad badge.

Share your stories and memories using #RioGrad and #RioWaves.

Here's to you, Rio Grad!  Congratulations!