As you may already be aware, the Lee College Foundation Annual Gala raised a record $204,458. I could not be prouder of the outstanding support the college received from the communities we serve. This record was made up of individual contributors as well as corporate donations. It reflected the support of long-time donors as well as first-time givers. It was exciting to see this type of support for my last Gala, and paves the way for even more Foundation Gala success in the future, as Dr. Lynda Villanueva takes over leadership of Lee College. A personal heartfelt thank you to everyone involved with the Gala.
The news keeps getting better. The college was recently notified it was the recipient of a $2.1 million United States Department of Education Title V grant. Federal grants are highly competitive, and are evaluated by a team who score each proposal based on very stringent criteria. For the first time that we know of in the history of Lee College, our proposal received a perfect score. Kudos to the following Lee College employees/consultant who worked hard not only to get the grant, but bring home the perfect score accolade: Dr. Pam Warford, Executive Director of Resource Development and the Foundation, Laurie Oehler, Director of Grant Management, Roberta Wright, Grant Writing Consultant, Dr. Veronique Tran, Vice President of Instruction, Victoria Marron, Executive Director of Retention and Transition Services, Diane Aslin, Title V Project Director, Scott Bennett, Executive Director of Enrollment Services and Registrar, Rick Vaughn, Data Analyst and Dr. Angela Oriano, Vice President of Workforce and Community Development. This five-year grant will support our Guided Pathways Initiative, which focuses on ensuring that all Lee College students have an educational plan, follow that plan, and complete their chosen certificate and associate degree pathway.
The good news keeps coming. Lee College recently received a $146,000 grant from the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC). The funds are being used to purchase a truck-driving simulator to help train students to drive 18-wheel tractor/trailer trucks. The program is located in Huntsville at the Lee College Inmate Education Program, in partnership with the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Julian Alvarez, TWC Commissioner, at the Wynn Unit in Huntsville, presented the check to the college on Sept. 12. Lee College has the largest inmate higher education program in the State of Texas, with over 1,100 students enrolled each semester.
On Sept. 12, 10 students graduated from the Lee College Education Center-South Liberty County Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) Program. This is an exciting new partnership between Lee College and Liberty County Emergency Medical Services. Many family and friends of the graduates attended the EMT Patch Ceremony. These students are on their way to an exciting career. This is the first of many certifications, as they work their way up to paramedics. Special thanks to Mike Koen, Executive Director of the Liberty County EMS, Dr. Eric Lopez, EMT Medical Director, Jahnea Palfrey, Healthcare Program Manager, Kim Best, EMT Program Director, and Jared Oliver, EMT Lead Instructor. Special thanks to the leadership for this program provided by Marsha Tuha, Director of Workforce Development For more information on the EMT Program and other workforce and community development programs, go to the Lee College website: www.lee.edu/workforce or call the Center for Workforce and Community Development at 281.425.6311.
As you can see, investing in Lee College pays off in many different ways.
Dr. Dennis Brown is President of Lee College.