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CCC&TI Foundation Community Campaign Begins

Published: 3/6/2024

The Foundation of Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute held its Annual Fund Campaign kickoff luncheon on Tuesday, March 5 at the J.E. Broyhill Civic Center in Lenoir.

Featuring community leaders, campaign volunteers, and college faculty and administrators, the event starts fundraising efforts for the Foundation’s Annual Fund Campaign. Deborah Murray, Vice-Chair of the Foundation’s Board of Directors, offered opening remarks and welcomed the crowd of supporters. Murray also announced the goal for this year’s campaign as $460,000, a nod to the college’s 60th Anniversary year and the highest to date for the Annual Fund Drive.

Murray also announced that the co-chairs for this year’s Fund Drive are CCC&TI President Dr. Mark Poarch and Foundation Board Chair Peg Broyhill. “A 60th Anniversary Year MUST have seasoned leadership. It is only fitting that this year’s campaign will be led by two of our most valuable leaders, two people who have successfully devoted decades of their lives to growing the results and the support for this institution,” said Murray.

Broyhill also spoke at the event about the importance of the fund drive and the support it provides to students and the institution. “Let’s challenge ourselves today to make this Annual Fund the best and most successful ever as a tribute to the college founders and early leaders and to ensure the promise of an education to so many worthy students,” said Broyhill. “I am grateful for the folks in our community who looked to the future and saw a need for education and a well- trained workforce, which would make our community a better place to live. It is because of them that we celebrate our crown jewel, CCC&TI! Happy 60th Birthday CCC&TI!”

CCC&TI President and Campaign Co-Chair Dr. Mark Poarch also gave brief remarks during the event, thanking those in attendance for the work they do through the Foundation to support students and help them reach their goals. “This is going to be an amazing year for CCC&TI, as we celebrate our 60th birthday, and our Diamond anniversary,” said Poarch. “We’re all familiar with the saying that diamonds are forever…but education is also forever. It is not an end. It is a catalyst to the future. Your hard work as part of this annual fund drive is not only investing in our students for the here and now, but investing in them for a lifetime. You are changing their lives now and forever. How awesome is that! This is transformational, life-changing work that we are doing together. Education is not only the great equalizer, it’s the great multiplier. It is the gift that keeps on giving forever and ever. Your investment in education in making our students’ lives better, paving the way for a future or prosperity and social mobility and a lifetime of opportunity.”

Foundation Campaign Leaders

Pictured from left to right are Foundation Vice-Chair Deborah Murray and this year’s Campaign Co-Chairs President Dr. Mark Poarch, and Foundation Board Chair Peg Broyhill.

Following Dr. Poarch’s remarks, CCC&TI Alumna Meredith Wilson also spoke about the impact that the college has had on her life. Wilson shared about how resources provided by the college helped her navigate the path from massage therapy to a new career. Wilson, who earned an Associate Degree in Welding Technologies, now works as a Safety Specialist and recruiter for FleetGenius. “I want to restate how crucial the community college is to our community. It literally changes lives. It changed my life,” said Wilson. “I found a supportive community of students and staff invested in my success,” said Wilson. “My associate degree in Welding Technologies has opened doors for me that I would have never imagined.” Wilson is continuing her education and shared with the group her future goals and plans but says CCC&TI will always be a special place for her. “I love that my journey began at CCC&TI. We will always have challenges to overcome in life, but thanks to CCC&TI, earning a degree does not have to be one of them.”

Following Wilson, CCC&TI Athletic Director Jeff Link shared information about the college’s athletic offerings and how Foundation dollars support the college’s student-athletes. “The Foundation helps support our student-athletes and makes it possible for them to have the total college experience,” said Link. Link shared details about the championship success of the college’s athletic teams and thanked supporters for helping provide opportunities that many of our student-athletes would not otherwise have access to. “Thank you for all you’re doing! Go Cobras!”

Foundation Executive Director Marla Christie recognized CCC&TI’s faculty and staff members, who kicked off their portion of the campaign in February. To date, the employee campaign has raised close to $30,000. Christie also shared that the student fundraising efforts reached an all-time high of over $6,600 in 2023.

Meredith Wilson

Pictured, alumna Meredith Wilson speaks to those in attendance about the impact that CCC&TI has had on her life.

Maggie Murray, CCC&TI’s Director of Student Life shared that students are continuing their work to raise additional funds. “I am excited to beat last year’s total of $6,600, big time! Thank you for having me and for all you do for our students,” said M. Murray.

Vice-Chair Murray recognizied Foundation staff members, college leaders and the Fund Drive Team Captains for the 2024 Campaign which are Peg Broyhill; Deborah Murray; Dr. Mark Poarch; Joan McGee; Barbara Freiman; Chase Keller and Jamie White; Linda Story and Jeanne Whisnant. A new alumni team is also being organized.

Board priorities for this year’s campaign include funding for scholarships, the Dream Award Program, student aid, athletics and other academic support. Vice-Chair Murray closed out the event adding, “Your support in this year’s fund drive improves the economic viability of college for every student who will come to Caldwell Community College – now and into the future.”

For more information on the Foundation of Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute, or to make a gift to the Annual Fund Drive, visit www.cccti.edu/donate or contact the Foundation Office at 828-726-2260.