09/20/12 — College kicks off fundraising drive

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College kicks off fundraising drive

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on September 20, 2012 1:46 PM

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Gene Smith, associate vice president of academic and student services at Wayne Community College, presents his version of the Olympic ribbon-twirling event Wednesday during the foundation's kickoff fundraising campaign at the college.

Wayne Community College kicked off its annual internal fundraising campaign for the Wayne Community College Foundation on Wednesday afternoon and recognized two instructors with Distinguished Chair awards.

Fe Finch, foreign language instructor in the language and communication department, and Tammy Bishop, department chair of pre-curriculum, each received $5,000 to use for travel and a keepsake for their offices.

The annual recognition is given to outstanding full-time curriculum or continuing education faculty members with at least five years of service with the college. The award was made possible by an anonymous donor to the Foundation of WCC.

Dr. Kay Albertson, president, said the only request made of the recipients is that after their travels, they return to the campus and make a presentation to staff, sharing their experiences.

In making the surprise announcement, Mrs. Albertson described Mrs. Finch as an "exemplary instructor (who) has helped build a program that helps prepare students for higher education."

She said Mrs. Finch has not only been adviser of the International Club, but journeyed with her students on camping trips and traveled abroad and developed her own supplemental website for students.

"She strives to make learning fun," Mrs. Albertson said. "Several of her students have gone on to become teachers themselves. ... According to her department chair, she does not just teach; she changes lives."

Mrs. Bishop has been an instructor and department chair at the college for five years. A Kellogg Fellow, she was described as an expert at working with "underprepared students."

"She is truly earning her red badge of courage," Mrs. Albertson said.

The assembly also served as a kickoff for the fundraising campaign that will be used for student scholarships, teacher mini-grants and to bring cultural events to the college that will be enjoyed by the community, the president said.

"(You) set the tone for setting up scholarships for so many people within this community. We're very proud of that," said Bill Hunter, chairman of the Foundation committee.

Last year, staff contributed almost $27,000 to the effort, Mrs. Albertson said. The goal had been $24,000.

"This year, our goal is $25,000 and we need 100 percent participation in keeping with the theme of 'going gold," she said.

The theme also played off the recent Olympics, with WCC staff good-naturedly demonstrating their own version of some of the sports represented, including a synchronized swim team and ribbon-twirling event.