Dec 09, 2019 | Columbia Campus

Fall 2019 Commencement Ceremony and Speaker Announcement

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(COLUMBIA, Tenn. – Dec. 9, 2019) - - - Columbia State Community College is pleased to announce alumnus Matt Niswander will deliver the commencement address to the graduating class during the fall 2019 commencement ceremony that will take place Dec. 14 at 10 a.m.

Niswander graduated from Columbia State in 2006 with an Associate of Applied Science degree in Nursing. He went on to complete his Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Master of Science in Nursing – Family Nurse Practitioner track from the University of Alabama in Huntsville. 

Niswander owns Niswander Family Medicine, a local primary care family medical practice, where he is a Family Nurse Practitioner. Niswander is also a first-generation cattleman from Lawrenceburg, TN where he and his wife, Colbie, and their three children, Jake, 9; Luke, 5; and Caleb, 3, raise Black Angus cattle. 

Niswander currently serves as the 2019 State Chairman of the Tennessee Young Farmers and Ranchers organization, which promotes leadership skills for farmers ages 18-35. Members share a common bond for the agricultural lifestyle, are interested in leadership development, and are dedicated to solving problems facing agriculture. The Tennessee Young Farmers and Ranchers organization also provides social activities and competitions that recognize young leaders in agriculture. 

Niswander has been all over the world advocating for Rural America and the family values that make our communities strong. From helping to form agricultural policy in Washington, DC and in Europe; to sharing personal stories about the opioid epidemic with politicians and consumers through published articles, podcasts, or in the streets of New York City; he is known for connecting with people and building real, personal relationships with everyone from any walk of life.

The commencement ceremony will take place in the Webster Athletic Center on the Columbia Campus, located at 1665 Hampshire Pike. Family and friends are encouraged to arrive early as seats are filled on a first-come basis. Overflow seating will be directed to the Ledbetter Auditorium, located in the Frank G. Clement Building.

The commencement ceremony will be streamed live for remote viewing. The ceremony can be found at

For the safety of students, faculty, staff and guests, security personnel will conduct a speedy inspection of all bags, purses and containers. The following items will not be allowed inside or outside during the commencement ceremonies: weapons, alcohol, laser pointers, lawn chairs, drones, glass containers or any other item deemed unacceptable by Columbia State security or staff. 

For a full list of prohibited items, parking, special seating information or further details regarding commencement, please visit

Matt Niswander headshot
Matt Niswander