Gala Vine & Dine Fundraiser Revenues Exceed $100K
Wednesday, 19 June 2013 16:26
The Mendocino College Foundation’s annual Gala on the Green Vine and Dine fundraiser was held on Saturday, June 1 to the largest crowd ever. The event hosted 433 guests, an increase of over 25% from last year.
(Pictured: Lake County residents Lori & Pat McGuire, Judy Conard, Megan Griffith, Wilda Shock, Trena & Armand Pauly)
This year’s Gala Vine & Dine was held on the Mendocino College Campus at the newly opened Student Plaza, showcasing the newly developed Student Center. “Having combined our planning efforts with the MESA (Math Engineering Science Achievement) Program many talented students from the Culinary Arts department created a masterpiece meal, the Performing and Visual Arts students provided the evening’s entertainment and students from our athletic department helped keep things moving all evening,” stated Richard Cooper, special events/marketing committee chair.
Cooper joined the Foundation in 2008 and quickly became the chair of special events providing the vision and leadership necessary to grow the Gala from revenue $52,000 in 2010 to over $100,000 in 2013. “Richard had a goal and with his tenacity and incredible leadership skills we have met that goal! As a result, more students will receive scholarships, book awards and financial support” stated Katie Fairbairn, foundation executive director.
Mendocino College Super Star: Theresa Rohr, R.N.
Wednesday, 19 June 2013 15:54
Mendocino College nursing program graduate, Theresa Rohr R.N., remembers the seemingly endless drain on her finances – especially at the end of the nursing program. “The state board exams were a huge expense, just as we were finishing years of school. It was very difficult on a tight budget. When our class of 2012 learned about the generous gift of $400 each from Mr. Albert Beltrami, to cover our state board exam fees, it was a blessing for all of us!”
Rohr was so moved by Beltrami's generosity that she decided to donate $1000 of her new R.N. salary toward the state board exam fees of the Mendocino College (MC) nursing program class of 2013. She is the first MC nursing program graduate to financially assist her fellow students. In addition to helping out in 2013, Rohr said she plans to donate at least $1000 to the nursing program every year!
Rohr entered the MC nursing program through the LVN to RN Bridge Program, which allows Licensed Vocational Nurses to progress to Registered Nurses. “I was working as an LVN in Oakland when I was admitted to the MC nursing program. Our family moved to Willits from Fremont in 2000. We were able to purchase a small home for half of what we were paying for rent in Fremont. At that time, my husband took over the care of our adult son, who has cerebral palsy, and I became the breadwinner for the family. I have commuted to Oakland ever since, working as an LVN, then progressing to an R.N. position after completing the MC nursing program and passing the state board exams in 2012.”
How did she manage to work full-time – in Oakland – while also attending school full-time in the MC nursing program?
Mendocino College Foundation Scholarship Winner Rosa Mendez
Wednesday, 22 May 2013 16:46
by Lynda Myers, Foundation Board Member
Rosa Mendez, winner of a Mendocino College Foundation Academic Excellence Scholarship, is proud that she is the first in her family of ten siblings to attend college.
Married, with three small children, Mendez is working on pre-requisites for the Mendocino College (MC) nursing program; she expects to apply for admission next year. She plans to earn an Associates Degree in Nursing (ASN), then a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) from a four-year university, perhaps Sonoma State. She dreams of serving as a nurse for Veteran's Affairs in the future.
Mendez said her husband, Scott Wilson, inspired her to attend MC. He graduated from the MC nursing program in 2012, and will graduate from Sonoma State University with a BSN in May 2013. “He loves college, and he has done well. I was happily employed as a dental assistant while he attended MC, but I realized I would like to go to college, too. We agreed that I would support him through the MC nursing program, then he would support me while I get my degree.”
Mendez, who works at the MC financial aid office, admits that it is challenging to balance family, work, and school responsibilities. She is grateful for the assistance of the MC Foundation scholarship, as well as North Coast Opportunities (NCO) which provides child care, and her wonderful boss, Karen Cavanaugh, “who understands that I am a student and a mother, and lets me work on a flexible schedule.”
As both Mendez and Wilson currently attend college, Mendez says it is only possible for them to manage because of support from their extended family, and “this amazing community.” She says her grandmother Theresa Palato, her mother-in-law Carol Wilson, and her sister Theresa Mendez are key members of the family's support system. “We couldn't do it without them.”
Mendez is proud that two of her siblings have followed her lead, and are now attending MC. “They are very excited, but also nervous. They tell me they feel 'old' in classes of mostly young students. I think all returning students feel that way at first,” she said. “After a while, age doesn't matter at all.”
Mendez says her mom is thrilled to have three of her children attending college.
Born in Southern California, Mendez moved to Ukiah with her parents at age 13. She relocated to the Bay Area at age 18, then she and her husband moved back to Ukiah in 2004 to raise their children close to the extended family.
She decided to attend MC because it was local, and also because she had heard that the faculty at MC are dedicated to the students in ways not often found at other colleges. “For example,” she said, “if you have questions, they will arrange their schedules to help.” She was also attracted by the small class sizes, “where more interaction is possible.”
Even with her busy life, Mendez finds time to participate in the Parent Policy Council (PPC) at NCO, which she finds interesting and fun.
Her advice to aspiring students is: “Take it one day at a time. Seek help from NCO, Financial Aid, MESA, and faculty who are willing to spend time with you. Remember that there is lots of help available to achieve your goals.”
Mendez said she is grateful to the Mendocino College Foundation for helping students of all ages go to college so they can better themselves.
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SAVE THE DATE
Mendocino College Foundation, Inc.
with Mendocino College MESA
2013 Gala on the Green
Vine and Dine
Saturday, June 1
Carter, Momsen & Knight
Jay & Lisa Epstein/State Farm Insurance
Frank R. Howard Memorial Hospital
Intercounty Mechanical & Electrical
Lake County Friends of Mendocino College
Gary & Edelgard Smith
Stan’s Maple Cafe
Sutter Lakeside Hospital
Wells Fargo Advisors John Goldsmith & Rand Rodgers
Diane Daubeneck Insurance
Katharine Elliott & George Husaruk