Every Gift Has a Story and Leaves a Lasting Legacy!
At Pensacola State College, the Foundation manages 278 scholarships that have been privately funded as a legacy that donors have helped create. Through these scholarships, 194 that are endowed, donors have supported the passions and interests of students who apply for financial assistance.
In 2020, the impact these donors created was felt by 964 students who were helped with 1,489 awards that total more than $685,863, a 35% increase since 2019!
Pensacola State College unveiled its new state-of-the-art Baars Technology Building during a ribbon cutting ceremony April 9 on the Pensacola campus.
The $15 million ─ 23,839-square-foot ─ two-story facility will be home to the College’s STEM programs, including cybersecurity, mathematics, computer science and other high-tech fields of study.
It replaces the Mary Ellison Baars Building. Demolished in January 2019, the Mary Ellison Baars Building was 60 years old and the College’s oldest structure. It was named in honor of the Baars family matriarch for making the original property available to the College.
“Pensacola State College was Florida’s first junior college established under the Minimum Foundation Program in 1947. We started in a downtown Pensacola boarding house, but the original Mary Ellison Baars Building was the first structure built at the Ninth Avenue location,” PSC President Ed Meadows said.
Once Lakisha Jones earns her Associate in Science degree in Pharmacy Management in December, she plans to retire. Kind of. Because when she graduates from Pensacola State College, Jones will finally begin her true career in the pharmacy field.
“I plan on retiring from my job at NAS and starting my pharmacy career at the Navy Hospital or the V.A.,” Jones explained. “I’ve worked at the Naval Exchange for 20 years, but I finally feel like I’m going to be doing what I was always meant to do.”
Jones ─ a mother of two children, ages 16 and 9 ─ was one of 11 PSC students awarded an African-American Memorial Endowment Scholarship or Dr. Garrett T. Wiggins “Live Your Dream” Scholarship. The scholarship trophies were presented on Feb. 26 at WSRE-TV aboard the Pensacola campus.
President Ed Meadows raised a glass recently to toast donors and supporters who have helped the College raise more than $6.2 million in an ambitious “Your Community — Your Legacy” capital campaign.
That’s 56 percent of the $11 million campaign goal that already has been met. And though the campaign began its quiet phase in December 2018, it wasn’t until Thursday’s press conference at the new Baars Building on the Pensacola campus that the campaign was unveiled to the public. The campaign will fund workforce development, student scholarships, a conference center and College growth and expansion.
Since the 2018 launch, 570 donors have contributed funds to the “Your Community — Your Legacy” campaign, with 226 donors giving $1,000 or more.
Several new faces and a familiar one have joined the Pensacola State College Foundation Board of Governors for the 2021-2023 term.
New board members are Jo-Ann Price, Fallon Kurpuis and Dick Dixon. Lisa McKenzie Dampier, who served on the Board of Governors in the 1990s, rejoined the board.
“Warm and Friendly” was Molly McGuire’s motto, and the adage remains the rule at McGuire’s Irish Pub, which has long been one of Pensacola’s most popular restaurants.
On Thursday, friends and family of Molly – the restaurant’s and family’s matriarch ─ brought plenty of warm, friendly feelings to Pensacola State College. They also brought a check for $50,350 that will grow the Molly McGuire Culinary Arts Endowed Scholarship and provide even more funds for PSC students.
Molly McGuire Martin died in 2014. Her husband, McGuire Martin, along with family members and friends in the Irish Politicians Club – a social club based at McGuire’s Irish Pub ─ established the scholarship in 2015 in her honor.
With the latest donation, the endowment principal is now $350,350, making it the College’s sixth-largest endowed scholarship.
Former Escambia County District 2 Commissioner Gene Valentino knows how to start a business. A successful entrepreneur, Valentino has founded numerous companies and even dabbled in film production.
Valentino hopes a gift to the Pensacola State College Foundation will help spur the growth of the College’s Entrepreneurship Program, which began in 2018.
In January, Valentino and his wife, Maureen, gifted property in Chumuckla appraised at $250,000, as well as an additional $20,000 to PSC to support the Entrepreneurial Program. The College will eventually sell the 4-acre-plus property and use the funds to establish an endowed scholarship and program support for Business Entrepreneurship students in the Valentino name. Students also will participate in an entrepreneurship competition for the scholarships each year.
Recently the Valentinos were at the Pensacola campus when the College said “Thank You” by renaming a lecture hall in Building 10 in their honor.