What happens when the barriers to success are removed for Tulsa Community College students? They succeed.
Clearing Pathway: The Campaign for Completion, the largest campaign fundraiser in TCC’s history, was introduced at the 2018 Vision in Education Leadership Award Dinner. Although the reclusive phase of the campaign was launched in November 2017, the public portion of the campaign started in 2018.
The heart of the campaign beats for the removal of barriers of success. Barriers students face from various obstacles. At the forefront of the campaign stands the TCC Foundation, President Leigh B. Goodson, committed members, volunteers, and cabinet leaders. All with one common goal, to propel students into success by addressing the threats to progress not only as an institution, but as a community.
From the institutions own study, the barriers that must be addressed are financial, navigational, and physical barriers for students. A concrete system that depends on the investment and engagement of the community is integrated into the campaign.
“Tulsa Community College’s Campaign for Completion is not about raising funds; it is about removing barriers so students can graduate. From our own institutional research and national studies, we know the three most serious barriers to completion are financial, navigational, and physical.” said Goodson.
The raising of $20 million for the Campaign for Completion has been split into five elements. The funds allocated are for the following elements: financial barriers, navigational barriers, physical barriers, chemistry and lab renovations at TCC’s metro campus to support STEM fields.
This includes $500,000 for diversity and inclusion outreach, by which through programs, such as Summer Bridge Program and Student Success Completion Grants helps improve student success for racial and ethnic minorities, low-income students, first-generation students and adult learners.
Through perpetuity and proper handling of funds, TCC will be able to close the gap of needs that prevent students from succeeding.
According to President Goodson the campaign has made great progress. “When we launched the public campaign last fall we were at 79%, approximately $15.9 million. Now, one year later, we have over $19 million confirmed. We have a clear path to completing the campaign at $20 million or more. We will be celebrating the completion sometime in mid-august,” said Goodson.
Despite the progress, there were challenges that presented themselves along the way. “The most challenging part of the campaign was getting to everyone that was interested in investing in TCC. We are still working on folks that have indicated interest, but it is just about time. Finding the time to listen and discuss,” Goodson said. Goodson did not face the challenges alone; challenges were suppressed by an effective team of community volunteers who became advocates on behalf of TCC students.
Without a team of dedicated cabinet leaders, the campaign would not have been as successful. Goodson expressed nothing but praise for the leaders’ relentless commitment and efforts.
“The campaign cabinet was critical. These individuals went all over the community, they even went without me sometimes,” said Goodson. “We are so grateful to the Campaign chair Stacy Schusterman and the Campaign Cabinet members for all the work they have done. I want to tank the Campaign Cabinet members. It is because of their leadership that TCC’s first multi-year comprehensive campaign has been so successful.”
Clearing the Pathway: The Campaign for Completion chair is Stacy Schusterman. The Campaign Cabinet members are Konnie Boulter, M. Ted Haynes, Alana R. Hughes, Phil Lakin, Jr., Bill Major, Ruth Nelson, Pierce H. Norton II, Meredith Siegfried-Madden, Jana Shoulders, and TCC President Leigh B. Goodson.
Without donor and individual involvment the college would not have seen such success. “The Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation is a lead donor. CLSFF is providing $3 million to the Campaign and an additional $1 million as a matching challenge grant. Of the $4 million, $2 million went to support the hiring of the additional 22 academic advisors and $1 million went to the chemistry and biology lab renovations.
With the matching challenge grant, CLSFF is providing $1 million as a dollar-for-dollar match, up to $100,000, for new donors who have never given to the TCC Foundation for endowed student scholarships.
The Hardesty Family Foundation has also been announced as $1 million donor to the Campaign for Completion for the Student Success Center on the TCC West Campus,” Goodson shared.
As the Campaign comes to a close, the college celebrates its success and thanks its donors, individuals, volunteers, and cabinet leaders for tirelessly working to make the campaign goals a reality, that is to provide safety and security to the students choosing to make TCC a part of their educational journey.