OCC Celebrates Students and Donors at Annual Scholarship Luncheon

The Oakland Community College Foundation hosted its 22nd Annual Scholarship Luncheon on Thursday, March 27, celebrating donors and 230 students who received more than 300 scholarships totaling $155,000.

Allison Horton thanks donors

OCC alum Allison Horton thanks donors

The award-winning Culinary Studies Institute prepared lunch for those attending the event at the Orchard Ridge campus, including donors, scholarship recipients, college officials and family members.

Veteran Detroit radio personality and OCC Foundation Board Member Bob Allesee served as Master of Ceremonies. OCC Foundation Executive Director Kathryn Rusak welcomed guests and thanked donors.

Student Lauren Crain tells donors how their help changed his life

Student Lauren Crain tells donors how their help changed his life

“We celebrate by honoring and thanking the people who contribute to our success,” Rusak said. “That includes our donors, including many OCC faculty, staff and retirees, our volunteer leadership, including the late Foundation board chair emerita Doris Mosher and the students of OCC, who give us purpose.”

Scholarship recipients Allison Horton and Lauren Crain spoke about how scholarships impacted their lives.

Horton graduated in December 2013 with an Associate’s Degree of Applied Science in Nursing and is currently a nurse in the Clinical Decisions Unit of the Emergency Department at St. Joseph Mercy Oakland. In addition to her full time job, Horton is mom to three children and will be enrolling in the RN to BSN program at the University of Detroit Mercy this fall.

“It recognizes the time and energy it takes to go to school,” Horton told guests about her scholarship. “It provides assistance and the belief from someone you’ve never even met. They believe in you. I had the luck to be chosen and I would like to thank you for helping make my dreams come true.”

Crain, in his second year of a Liberal Arts degree, received his GED in 2010. He has been employed as a student assistant in the Office of Financial Resources on the Southfield campus and is a two-time recipient of the OCC Gala Dinner Endowed Scholarship.

“Adversity has not kept me from achieving my goals,” Crain said. “I would like to thank donors and I will make it a priority to excel and prove that you gave this scholarship to the right recipient.”

More event photos are available here.

The OCC Foundation was formed in 1979 to receive private contributions from members of the community, corporations, philanthropic foundations and alumni to provide opportunities for students and to enhance the quality of education at the college.  Gift dollars support scholarships and special programs. All gifts to the OCC Foundation are currently eligible for federal tax deductions.  A volunteer 17-member board of directors governs the OCC Foundation, and includes community leaders, two representatives of the college’s board of trustees and one faculty member.

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