"These scholarship awards enable us to connect our students to amazing resources."
April 20, 2023

Named Scholarship Awards Breakfast 2023: PCCC Scholarship Awards at Highest Level in Foundation History

The PCCC Foundation’s Named Scholarship Breakfast 2023 marked an important milestone this year.
“We awarded a record number of scholarships,” announced Dr. Steven Rose, president of PCCC, in his opening remarks to the audience of donors, scholarship recipients, and PCCC staff members who gathered in the Main Campus Paterson Room for the event, held annually to allow the donors who support scholarships at PCCC an opportunity to meet the grateful student recipients.

Over $78, 000 in more than 100 scholarships was awarded to students for the 2022-2023 academic year.

“These scholarship awards enable us to connect our students to amazing resources and also help our most vulnerable students,” noted Todd Sorber, Vice President of Institutional Advancement at the College. Mr. Sorber explained that many PCCC students are so financially challenged that “even what seems like a small amount of money can mean the difference between leaving college or completing another year.”

According to Meredith Behrens, director of the PCCC Foundation, PCCC now offers 40 unique Named Scholarships. “That’s the most we’ve ever had,” she said, acknowledging faithful donors who came forward even during the pandemic. Among the donors represented at the Breakfast were Spencer Savings Bank, The Paterson Rotary Club/William P. Hannah Memorial Trust, and Coppa Montalbano Architects.

Steven Coppa, a Named Scholarship Contributor, who also serves on the PCCC Foundation Board of Trustees stated, “We established Named Scholarships for five PCCC students who are interested in pursuing careers in Building Sciences.  The students at PCCC have unlimited potential.  A lack of   financial resources should not be the reason why students do not fulfill their personal dreams and career ambitions.  I applaud the Foundation for operating the Named Scholarships Program and for making it easy for donors to positively impact on a student’s life.” 

Among the new scholarships, the Professor Fang-Lan Wang Kuo Nursing Award For Academic Excellence was established by the daughters of a former PCCC nursing instructor to honor their late mother. One of the first recipients, Marta Walska, commented, “I am honored and appreciate this very much. It is very nice of Professor Kuo’s daughters to keep her memory alive this way.” An immigrant from Poland and a single mother, Marta decided to become a nurse when her father was in the hospital and she saw how the nurses cared for him.  “Also, I have three aunts in Poland who are nurses, so I thought this was the path I should pick,” she added. Now working at a hospital herself, Marta vows “to help as many people as I can.”

Other Named Scholarships were awarded to students majoring in a variety of fields including culinary arts, homeland security, criminal justice, education, and more.

In addition to providing financial assistance, donations to the PCCC Foundation also enable students to enjoy exceptional enrichment experiences, such as the NASA Community College Aerospace Scholars (NCAS) program, through which selected students serve as interns with NASA, learning from and working alongside NASA scientists, onsite at one of the space agency’s locations. 

Other benefits provided through donor generosity include the OER (Online Educationsl Resources) program which has eliminated the need to purchase costly textbooks in nearly half of PCCC’s courses, saving students thousands of dollars.

Additionally, donor dollars have funded such beneficial projects as the creation of a STEM Center of Excellence and an Early Childhood Education Success Coaching program with hands-on classrooms for teacher education. Also underway is the establishment of a Multicultural Resource Center that will partner with local social service providers to address student needs for food and housing assistance and mental health services.

Commenting on the success of the Named Scholarship Program and other Foundation fundraising,
Deborah S. Hoffman, director of the Passaic County Department of Economic Development and chair of the PCCC Foundation Board of Trustees thanked everyone at the breakfast for “helping students to succeed with both your financial and emotional support.”

The PCCC Foundation is on track to award more than $800,000 in scholarships for the 2023-2024 academic year.  Anyone interested in creating a new scholarship at the College is urged to do so this month, since April is Named Scholarship Month at PCCC.   “This is the perfect time to establish a scholarship,” explained Mr. Sorber. “One of our generous donors has agreed to match any donations made in April, so the scholarship award you create will be doubled.”

To establish a PCCC Foundation Named Scholarship Award, please click here