Funding roundup

Kevin Ruediger, a Butler County Community College (BC3) associate professor and coordinator of BC3’s metrology program, demonstrates measuring the interior of a geowidget with a tactile probe attached to the program’s new FARO Quantum S measurement tool. (Photo: BC3)

A $90,000 FARO measurement tool gifted to Butler County Community College (BC3) in Pennsylvania will enhance a distinctive and nationally known metrology program whose graduates have the highest potential starting salaries among the college’s occupational associate degree selections in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

The FARO Quantum S measuring machine, donated by the manufacturer to the BC3 Education Foundation, will “open up opportunities for measurement,” said Matt Kovac, BC3’s dean of STEM.

The Quantum S allows its operator to choose between a hand-held, pea-sized tactile probe to touch an object in order to measure and create a 3D model, or switch to a laser-line probe to scan items for reproduction.

Florida

Tallahassee Community College (TCC) received a $25,000 donation from John and Maria Lentz to support a Wakulla Environmental Institute (WEI) project, which is focused on providing job training in aquaculture and maritime occupations and promoting regional tourism and recreation activity.

John Lentz has supported the college in a variety of volunteer roles over the last decade. He served as a member of the TCC Foundation’s board of directors and was on the WEI Campaign Team. Lentz and his wife are TCC alumni.

“As graduates, we both know the value of a TCC degree,” Lentz said. “It is important to us to support others who choose TCC, and to be able to provide that support where we live in Wakulla County was an easy decision to make.”

Kentucky

Gateway Community & Technical College will use a $6,000 Give Where You Live NKY grant to offer some free childcare for students during the fall semester.

This is the second Give Where You Live NKY grant Gateway has received. GThe group hosts quarterly meetings throughout the year. During the meetings, three nonprofits are randomly selected and briefly discussed by the group. The attendees vote on their favorite of the three organizations, and each person in attendance writes a check for $100 for the grant to the winning organization.

Maryland

Community College of Baltimore County (CCBC) can help more science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) students thanks to a $998,375 National Science Foundation grant. The goal of the funding is to provide educational opportunities to low-income, academically talented students through scholarships and student support services. The college also will use the funds to promote full-time enrollment and degree achievement in several science and math disciplines.

Massachusetts

Holyoke Community College (HCC) received a $100,000 gift from Victor and Mariellen Quillard to assist Hispanic students. The gift will establish a new endowed scholarship in the Quillards’ name.

Victor Quillard, a retired president of Hampden Bank, and his wife, Mariellen, are both Holyoke natives and their gift aims to support local Hispanic residents who are pursuing college degrees. The Quillards also donated $100,000 to Westfield State University for the same purpose.

“As a Hispanic-serving institution, HCC is particularly grateful for the Quillards’ leadership in helping us graduate more students from underserved populations and in creating a path for students to continue their education beyond HCC,” said Amanda Sbriscia, HCC vice president of institutional advancement and executive director of the HCC Foundation.

Michigan

Dr. David H. Sturtz, an oral and maxillofacial surgeon and St. Clair County Community College (SC4) alumnus, has donated $50,000 to his alma mater to create an endowed scholarship to support students pursuing health-care and STEM programs.

“My mom always said the best investment you can make is in yourself,” said the Vietnam veteran, who transferred to Albion College, where he graduated summa cum laude as a pre-med major before enrolling at the University of Michigan School of Dentistry. “The quality of education and the support and services I found at SC4 were on par with anywhere else I went. I feel very fortunate to have started at SC4. It provided me with a solid foundation, great experience and a seamless transition.”

Dr. David Sturtz’s love and admiration for his parents, appreciation of his community college, and passion for improving the health and wellness of his patients inspired him to establish the David and Anne Sturtz Endowed Scholarship in memory of his parents to support SC4 students pursuing health care and STEM programs. (Photo: SC4)

Pennsylvania

Northampton Community College (NCC) received $199,780 from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development’s (PA DCED) Pennsylvania Manufacturing Training-to-Career Grant Program. The funding supports free training for 60 students in Microcredentials for Manufacturing, an industry-validated training program that lattices technical and job readiness skills. The program allows for flexibility and rewards student progress and retention. It also meets regional employer demand for entry-level workers.

Texas

In Texas, where the effects of 2017’s Hurricane Harvey are still being felt, Lone Star College (LSC) students who were victims of the storm can get a little help. A $300,000 grant from the Qatar Harvey Fund and Rebuild Texas Fund will establish a new scholarship program to assist up to 300 students who had financial challenges after the hurricane. The funds will help students get back to school and back on track with help for tuition and related academic costs.

“We know firsthand the catastrophic damage Hurricane Harvey imposed on our community,” LSC Chancellor Stephen C. Head said in a news release. “These funds will go a long way to help our students continue on the road to recovery and complete their education.”

Washington

Columbia Basin College’s Veterans Education and Transition Services Center can support more student veterans thanks to a $250,000 donation from Sue Frost. Frost’s late husband, Dan, was a World War II veteran.

Wyoming

Eastern Wyoming College (EWC) students will get an opportunity to use virtual and augmented reality thanks to a $10,000 grant from the Wyoming NASA Space Grant Consortium. EWC instructors Dinesh Kasti and Sridhar Budhi submitted the grant proposal, which involves using virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) in the science and arts curriculum.

Research conducted by Kasti and Budhi shows that VR and AR provide engaging, immersive and cost-efficient ways of learning complicated science concepts in the fastest way.

“Students are excited and engaged to do activities that involve some sort of technology, and they have little to no hesitance in trying them. Also, it is important now to train students who are not very inclined towards technology to prepare them for a technological future,” Budhi said.

About the Author

Tabitha Whissemore
is a contributor to Community College Daily and managing editor of AACC's Community College Journal.