10/22/08 — WCC Foundation begins annual local scholarship fund drive

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WCC Foundation begins annual local scholarship fund drive

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on October 22, 2008 1:46 PM

The Foundation of Wayne Community College, which just wrapped up its campus fund drive, is now turning its eye toward its community-wide effort.

The Foundation, a non-profit organization, provides funds for student scholarships and other financial needs, mini-grants for faculty and arts and humanities programs throughout the year. An estimated $245,000 in scholarships were awarded to 341 students during the last academic year.

Jack Kannan, Foundation director, said the recent effort to solicit donations from the faculty and staff, which ended Friday, brought in $23,000. The campaign goal was $20,000.

"It was the most successful one we have had," he said. "I think it's because we explained there's a great need now for helping others."

The next phase is the community drive, Kannan said. The total goal is $350,000.

"The first gift, $55,000, we raised from the golf tournament. Then the $23,000 that the faculty and staff have done," he said.

Efforts to raise the remainder will continue through the rest of the year.

"We will be mailing out information to the 'Friends of the Foundation' who have been supporters in the past," Kannan explained. "Then we plan to expand our outreach, through more active participation by my board of directors."

The other aspect, he noted, is to get the word out and "tell our story."

It's a story the director enjoys telling.

Much of the success of the Foundation, Kannan said, comes from years of relationship building.

Those relationships, he explained, are a by-product of offering quality programs -- from jazz singer Nnenna Freelon and a tribute to "Mr. B," a popular former drama teacher at Goldsboro High School, to the recent "Ray Bunch Scores" gala for the GHS graduate who went on to become an Emmy-winning producer in Hollywood -- that have been well-supported, both physically as well as financially.

"I feel comfortable that we have been laying this solid foundation," he said.

The surrounding community, as well as former residents who still follow the college's success, continue to support efforts here, and Kannan said he is confident this year's goal will be reached.

For more information on the foundation or to make a donation, call Kannan at 735-5151.