The Whatcom Community College Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization with a mission to strengthen educational opportunities at WCC by providing student scholarships, supporting faculty and staff development, and funding key College initiatives. Established in 1987, the Foundation has a long history of meeting student and community needs.
Contributions to the Foundation help ensure access to higher education and promote innovation and excellence on our campus. Here are examples of how our donors are helping students achieve their dreams.
Thanks to an Annual Fund for Excellence grant, the Learning Center was able to hire more tutors for students needing customized academic support. Tutors meet one-on-one with individuals improving their math, writing composition, and other academic skills. Additionally, specialized support is provided for students in Adult Basic Education and GED classes, and a math coach works with student veterans in a lab dedicated for their use.
The WCC Foundation contributed more than $310,000 in scholarships to 219 students during the 2014-15 academic year. This financial support often makes the difference in a student's ability to enroll at Whatcom or complete a degree.
“I worked it out and my $3,000 scholarship essentially allowed me to do four hours per day of studying instead of working those same hours at a minimum wage job. The financial help I’ve received, plus the incredible support of my instructors and the sense of community on campus are what encouraged me to keep going with my studies. As a single mother and the first person in my family to ever attend college, these have been really hard years but great years.” –Janet, pursuing transfer degree in nursing
Whatcom's Intercultural Center is an important facet of Whatcom’s commitment to diversity. The center helps first-generation students and students of color stay in school and succeed through advising and referral services. An Annual Fund for Excellence grant supported increased staff hours and backed student and faculty attendance at the Students of Color Conference in Yakima.
“At the Students of Color Conference, I meet people of color who are professionals. That motivates me to pursue my goals and to encourage my peers to do the same. Thank you for supporting this transformative experience and the Intercultural Center." –Marco Morales, pursuing transfer degree in sociology
Financial aid emergency & book fund
Whatcom students spend an average of $360 a quarter on books and supplies. With many students already struggling to pay tuition, this expense can be a factor in their decision to stay in school or to wait another year.
“Thank you so much for funding my American Sign Language book this year. I couldn’t have taken the class without receiving book funding. Your encouragement through this grant means so much!" –Serena, Running Start student, pursuing transfer degree and high school diploma
Turning point program
This career and life-planning course is an empowering experience for individuals who have lost their primary income source and who need help determining their next steps. An Annual Fund for Excellence grant supports materials, staffing and student scholarships. Due to state funding cuts, this program would have been eliminated without this crucial financial help.
“Although I’ve experienced drastic changes in my life that could be debilitating if I let them, I see this as a time of joy. I get to change my life! With hard work and a positive attitude, I believe anything is possible. Thank you for supporting student scholarships and the Turning Point program.” –Synthia, pursuing transfer degree in nursing
Support for veterans
Sen. Patty Murray visited Whatcom in April to meet with student veterans. From left, WCC President Kathi Hiyane-Brown, student veteran David Aguilar (transfer degree, accounting), veterans academic advisor Jarid Corbitt, Sen. Murray and student veteran Robert Rayford (CIS degree). Your contributions support academic programs tailored specifically for student veterans.“Veterans tell us having a dedicated space on campus with people who can empathize with their experiences and connect them with the resources they need is critical for their success. Thank you for supporting the WCC Foundation so that we can continue to provide these valuable services.” –Jarid Corbitt, certifying official and veterans academic advisor