Salute to Excellence Scholarship Event Highlights Students and Supporters

Donors Kenneth and Valerie Baker are proud to award the 2014-15 KVB Foundation Scholarship to Jeremiah Garcia, a Liberal Studies major who will graduate in May 2015. Photo by Anita Jerva

Donors Kenneth and Valerie Baker are proud to award the 2014-15 KVB Foundation Scholarship to Jeremiah Garcia, a Liberal Studies major who will graduate in May 2015. Photo by Anita Jerva

Montgomery County Community College’s annual Salute to Excellence Scholarship event embodies the College’s solid commitment to access to higher education, student success and community engagement.

This year, thanks to the support of generous donors and the success of its Futures Rising comprehensive fundraising campaign, the College’s Foundation awarded 305 students with more than $522,500 from nearly 150 donor-funded scholarships—the largest number of recipients awarded and the most scholarship money raised in the Foundation’s history.

This includes more than 80 new scholarship funds established since July 1, 2013, when the College’s Foundation initially launched its ambitious Futures Rising campaign to raise $9 million for student scholarships. The Foundation expects to reach and even exceed its goal by June 30, 2015.

“The support of the Futures Rising comprehensive fundraising campaign enables the College to keep the doors to higher education open to everyone who desires an education,” said Dr. Karen A. Stout, president. “Every year, we see an increase in the number of students who require financial aid to cover their educational expenses; in 2014-15, the total unmet need of our students exceeds $29 million. Scholarships enable our students to complete their education and graduate debt free, and we are grateful for the generosity of our donors and community partners.”

At the Salute to Excellence event held at Normandy Farms in Blue Bell on March 31, the College’s Foundation honored more than 320 donors and students. The evening provided an opportunity for scholarship recipients to share their experiences and personally thank the donors who helped them achieve their education goals.

For students like Jeremiah Garcia, 21, of Plymouth Meeting, scholarships not only provide financial security, but a message of encouragement and assurance.

“Last year, I was awarded the Alumni Association Scholarship, and this year I was awarded the KVB Foundation Endowed Scholarship,” said Garcia, who has been an orphan and in foster care since he was 4 years old. “Because of these scholarships, I was given some financial stability that allowed me to concentrate on my studies. A giant weight was lifted from my shoulders and allowed me to have time to get involved in campus. I am proud to say that during my first year as a student, I became the Student Government Association President, and I made first team on the men’s soccer team. In my second year, I was elected President of the American Student Association of Community Colleges, was nominated to be captain of the men’s soccer team, and was elected Vice President of the Student Government Association.”

Following his graduation from Montgomery, Garcia plans to continue his education, majoring in Business Administration with a concentration in Entrepreneurship at a four-year school.

“I will always remember the difference these scholarships made in my life, and some day, I hope I will be able to pay it forward for someone like me to succeed,” he added.

For more information about student scholarships at Montgomery County Community College or for information about establishing a named fund, please contact Stephanie Wittig, Director of Alumni Relations and Special Programs, at or 215-461-1139.

~ by Diane VanDyke

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