In September 1999, several area women recognized the need for non-academic areas of support for women students at Mott Community College (MCC). Too often, education and professional development were being interrupted for women due to financial difficulties related to their status as single mothers, divorcees or returning students. Their hope was to provide these women with the means to continue their academic and professional pursuits with a fund especially designed for non-academic areas of support.
The ensuing years and the vision of 20 dynamic women who comprised the Women In Education (WIE) Advisory Committee have provided the various components of WIE, which continues to grow stronger each year. WIE truly represents the concept of people helping people at MCC to complete their education through non-traditional financial support, personal and professional guidance and mentoring.
WIE funding is available for eligible students with non-traditional needs such as medical or dental emergency, inoperable car, lack of professional clothing, etc., that create a barrier to the student attending classes. Students must meet eligibility criteria and make application for assistance through the Counseling Office at 762-0111.
Personal and professional mentoring is a large part of this initiative. Volunteer mentors are trained to assist the student in identifying needs, understanding the resources available, as well as offering support and guidance during their educational process at MCC. For more information on this component, please call the Foundation at (810) 762-0425.
A free annual enrichment series is held for WIE recipients and the MCC student body. Designed on the recommendations of Fellowship recipients, the series addresses significant career topics, such as: Preparing Yourself for the Workforce; Marketing Yourself Using the Seven P’s; Planning for Financial Growth; Dressing for Success Affordably, to name a few. For more information on this component, please call the Foundation at (810) 762-0425 or review the Calendar of Events at www.foundation.mcc.edu.
Ellen’s Closet was established to help provide gently-used professional clothing for students. Clothing donations are received by MCC’s Business Division (810) 762-0429 and made available to all students. This component was initiated through WIE and named in honor of Dr. Ellen Howe, who was one of several spearheading the WIE Initiative.
The WIE Fellowship is based on a national program of the Jeannette Rankin Foundation to develop leaders for success in the 21st century through mentoring, networking, nurturing intellectual growth, and inspiring personal transformation. It provides up to $2,000 for female students who meet strict Fellowship criteria and funds are used to cover any emergency non-academic costs that occur during the course of the Fellows’ MCC education or are given directly to the students upon graduation as an investment in their career. For more information on Fellowships, please call the Foundation at (810) 762-0425.
The Fellowship holds high expectations for the students including attending at least two major WIE fundraising initiatives; participate in special events; attend advisory meetings; participate in workshops; and serve as Ambassadors for the Fellowship. At the conclusion of the program, participants also are expected to apply acquired and observed skills to a current issue facing women at MCC or the community at large. Finally, Fellows are expected to continue to assist WIE by helping mentor younger Fellows.
To date, Fellows include: Tracy Hogan (Business Management), Teashan Buchanon (Social Work Technician), Thomasinia Terrell (Social Work Technician), Towanna Davis (Culinary Arts), and Kimberly Norton (Occupational Therapy Assistant), Latisha Berry, Angela Langley, Heidi Tolert, Melody Gaddy, Erica Davis, Shawn Elswick (Social Work Tech), Elena Woodward (Social Work Tech), Danielle Nettleton (Program Communication Tech & Media Arts), Ke'Yonna Sanders (Nursing), Katina Caldwell (Business), Anita Clarke (Culinary Arts/Food Management), Kimberly Pentecost (Nursing), Amanda Smith (Business), Connie Bowren (Culinary Arts/Food Management). Congratulations, ladies!