Funding roundup

South Seattle College student Blanca Olivera spoke of her struggles and success at a fundraiser. Photo: South Seattle CollegeSouth Seattle College student Blanca Olivera spoke of her struggles and success at a fundraiser. Photo: South Seattle College

South Seattle College’s (SSC) 2017 Gifts from the Earth fundraiser raised a record $273,000. Proceeds from the event support SSC programs and students with scholarships, internships, emergency funding, tutoring and more.

Student Blanca Olivera was a featured speaker at the event. She immigrated to the United States from Mexico and, with scholarship support, is now on her path toward becoming a lawyer that defends the rights of immigrant and underserved communities.

“I feel proud to be able to encourage my siblings and others to follow their dreams and not be afraid to put themselves out there and take risks,” Olivera said.

Her speech inspired the crowd to donate $64,400 for students and programs during the Fund-A-Dream portion of the auction, with an anonymous supporter matching $50,000 of that total.


Big Sandy Community and Technical College (BSCTC) will establish a community dental health coordinator certificate program using a $30,000 grant from Avesis. The program will offer continued training to individuals who have completed the dental hygiene integrated program. It will open up more occupational opportunities for the students while also providing much-needed oral health services in the region.

North Carolina

Cape Fear Community College’s radiography program received a donation of state-of-the-art equipment from the Cape Fear Memorial Foundation. The gift includes a new patient table, a radiographic tube, an x-ray control panel and a wall unit. The equipment is valued at $50,000.


Lord Fairfax Community College (LFCC) will have a permanent home for its Luray-Page County Center. Baker Development Partnership has donated 6.3 acres of land to the college. LFCC envisions a 10,000-square-foot facility initially, with room to expand. The building will include state-of-the-art classrooms, rooms for science labs and workforce training, open spaces for students, and multi-purpose space that can be used for community benefit.

The college now needs to raise $1 million before construction can begin.


Milwaukee Area Technical College (MATC) will be able to double the size of its registered nursing program thanks to a $2.3 million grant from United Health Foundation. Growing the program will help address the state’s nursing shortage.

Besides doubling enrollment, MATC will use funds to hire 16 new nursing instructors and provide job placement services to graduates. MATC is matching the United Health grant to expand the number of tutors, teaching assistants and other support services to students.

“To ensure our health care system is the most modern, innovative and effective in the world requires targeted investments to develop the next generation of health care workers,” said Dustin Hinton, president and CEO of UnitedHealthcare of Wisconsin. “The partnership between Milwaukee Area Technical College and United Health Foundation is the type of private-public approach we need to address the shortage of nurses in Wisconsin.”

About the Author

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