Building Community 2017

Giant check

A $428,000+ donation from the estate of a Tucson woman will help fund scholarships for aspiring nurses.

I had the privilege of speaking last week at the Building Community breakfast, a Pima Community College Foundation event in which students and friends of PCC share the ways PCC support has helped students realize their academic and career dreams.

About 200 people heard from Shekeycha Ward and Kyle Hughes, both of modest means. Shekeycha is an aspiring pediatric nurse; Kyle is studying to be an accountant and hopes to become a lawyer. They described how scholarships helped them pay for school, and how PCC supports students who are new to the world of higher education. As Shekeycha says, “College is different from the movies . . .  It’s OK to know that there are things you don’t know.”

I shared how the College’s North Star – student success, community engagement and diversity – is driving a wide range of developing initiatives. These include regionally and nationally recognized Centers of Excellence in Applied Technology, Healthcare and other areas essential to the economic growth of our county and state.

We also are building academic pathways that precisely map students’ education journeys at PCC, so they can save time and money by earning credentials quickly and efficiently.

Howard N. Stewart, president and CEO of AGM Container Controls, spoke eloquently about the need for companies to provide financial assistance to employees who wish to continue their education.

Rachel Schaming, Executive Director of the Foundation, and her team deserve recognition for bringing together community leaders and students in an enriching celebration of achievement and promise.

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