BC receives treasured memento from first commencement

BC receives treasured memento from first commencement

Wed May 27, 2015

Brazosport College recently received a rare glimpse deep into its past thanks to the generosity of the family of Brazosport College’s “first graduate.”

Del Rio resident Steve Berg recently donated to Brazosport College a framed document that honored his mother, Shirley Mims Berg. The memento consisted of her Associate of Arts degree from Brazosport Junior College, an invitation to the event and a newspaper photo from “The Facts” of her accepting the degree.

While earning a degree is always a hard-earned and special moment, Shirley Mims Berg’s honor has an extra bit of significance, as she was not only in the College’s first graduating class in 1970, she was also the first person to walk across the stage to accept a degree.

At the time of her degree, Brazosport College was named Brazosport Junior College. The school’s name was changed to Brazosport College less than a year later.

In that first graduation on May 28, 1970, Brazosport Junior College graduated 25 students with Berg being the first student to accept a degree.

Berg, who was 40 years old at the time of receiving her Associate of Arts, went on to earn both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree, and had a successful career as a teacher. She passed away in 1993.

Her son, Steve Berg, received the document after his father’s death and generously donated the rare item to Brazosport College in April.

Today, 46 years after opening its doors in 1968, Brazosport College serves more than 30,000 students a year and has been recognized twice by the Aspen Institute as one of the 10 best colleges in the nation.