The Foundation for Mott Community College engages with students, alumni, faculty and staff to promote higher education across Flint, Genesee County and beyond. Read on to consider our mission, to be inspired by Shanti’s story and to meet our president, chair and board of directors. Then, roll up your sleeves and learn how you can help!
The Mission of the Foundation for Mott Community College
The Foundation for Mott Community College (The Foundation) is a community based 501(c)3 non-profit organization whose major purpose is to acquire and distribute resources to the students, faculty and staff of Mott Community College, as it contributes to educational, literary, multicultural and financial efforts that advance excellence and richness to the community.
It is our goal at Mott Community College that you - our community - will participate in, advise, contribute and benefit from the Foundation for Mott Community College. With your assistance and support, the Foundation will greatly enhance the quality of education and opportunity in this community.
There is this old man on the side of a road that connects two villages, who is trying to plant a sapling. A young passerby asks the old man what he is doing. The old man replies that he is planting this shade tree. “But, says the young man, it’ll be years before it can provide any shade and you will be long gone by then.” “It’s not for me,” replies the old man. “I have already made use of the shade from trees planted by others – this one is for the future travelers.”
“So you see, all my life,” Shanti stated, “I have rested in the shade of the trees I didn't plant. I have been warmed by the fires I did not light and I have quenched my thirst from the wells I didn't dig. So in gratitude, this is my little effort at planting a sapling.” Shanti is actually Dr. Rajagopal Shantaram, a Foundation for Mott Community College Board Member but is affectionately called Shanti. He admits to resting in the shadows of shade trees most of his life.
During the naming ceremony for the Student Life Center, Shanti shared his inspiration and reasoning for giving back to MCC as the Student Life Center was named for his loving parents G. Radhabai (RA-da-boy) and A.V. Rajagopal (RAJ-a-go-pal). His parents’ dedicated conviction to education was the impetus for bestowing the generous monetary honor as he recalled an ancient Indian folk story.
You must know that your donation makes a world of difference to our students. Your gift gives someone a future, someone else an opportunity, someone else a second, third or even fourth chance at a better life. In these uncertain economic times, your gift is so vitally important and the need is so great. The Foundation for Mott Community College plays a pivotal role in ensuring that MCC’s doors are open to the entire community and individuals like you and my friend Shanti play a major role as well – providing exemplary support.
Your unwavering support is a constant source of comfort and encouragement for us. MCC would not be as successful as it is today without you. I can promise you that. So, I hope you’ll look into your heart and make as generous a contribution as possible. Believe me, you are making a direct impact. Please consider making a gift at this time. Go ahead, plant that sapling today!
Lennetta B. Coney,
The Foundation for Mott Community College
Mott Community College has been “Changing Lives for A Changing World” for 100 years. I am proud to serve as the board Chair for the Foundation For Mott Community College, and be a part of that change.
The Foundation’s work makes it possible for Mott Community College to support their students both inside and outside of the classroom. Whether students need scholarships, supplies, transportation, housing or food, the Foundation makes it possible for the College to support the whole student and their unique needs. It is an honor and privilege to serve the Foundation as its tenth Board Chair to help ensure that our students remain engaged in their education and motivated to stay on the path to completion.
I hope you will join us in supporting and encouraging our students in the pursuit of their educational, career and personal goals.
Anthony Alexander, Board Chair
The Foundation for Mott Community College
Lennetta Coney has worked as a Mott Community College (MCC) administrator since 1987. Presently, she holds two titles— President of The Foundation for Mott Community College and Executive Director of the Office of College & Community Advancement. In those two respective capacities she is responsible for private fundraising, special events and multicultural affairs at MCC.
As the president and chief development officer for the Foundation for MCC, she has grown the foundation from $194,000 to just over $12M currently, established an Alumni Association for the school and developed and implemented programs to uniquely link the community to the college.
"Mrs. Coney has been a long-time board member for the Council for Resource Development (CRD) which is a national organization for community college funding. In 2004, Lennetta held the title of Director for Region V which encompassed Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Ontario and Wisconsin. In March of 2007, under Coney's leadership, Mott College was the host site for a resource development training program open to community college fundraisers nationwide.
Prior to coming to Mott College, Mrs. Coney worked on the East Coast for thirteen years both in New York City and Washington, DC before returning to her hometown, Flint, MI. In those years she served as Senior Account Executive for a specialty market advertising agency in New York City and also held the title of Assistant Manager of local advertising at Equitable Life Assurance Society. She entered the buying and merchandising field while working for Garfinckel's in the nation's capital.
In 1992, Mrs. Coney took a brief hiatus to work as the Director of Public Relations for the former mayor of the City of Flint, Woodrow Stanley.
Mrs. Coney's professional involvement includes her membership in the Association of Fundraising Professionals, Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) and its National Conference Planning Committee, Council for Resource Development, The Links, Inc. and membership in Michigan ACE Women in Higher Education Network (in November 2016 Mott hosted the ACE Women of Color Collaborative Luncheon). Equally extensive is the list of community organizations where Mrs. Coney donates her time and talent. These include Mott Children's Health Center, Rotary Club of Flint, and Board member for Flint Institute of Music, New Paths, Inc., the National Association of Career Women, and she serves as the co-chair of FIM's Black Classical Music Family Festival and as an announcement clerk and member of the usher board for Mt. Olive Baptist Church.
She is a past recipient of the Community Development Corporation P.A.P.A.S.’ Women In Power Living Legend Award, the Donald Riegle Community Service Award, the Chamber of Commerce's Athena Award, YWCA's Nina Mills/Women of Achievement Award, the Woman of the Year Award from the National Association of Women in Higher Education, Career Woman of the Year from the National Association of Career Women, the Golden Apple Employee Award from Mott College, the Choice Award from the Flint Club of the Negro Business and Professional Women, Community Service Award from the Eta Phi Beta Sorority Inc., The Outstanding Achievement Award from the National Sorority of Phi Delta Kappa, Inc., Woman of the Year Award from Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.-Theta Tau Chapter, The Martin Luther King Jr. Award and the Arts/Cultural Awareness Award from the Catholic Charities' Spanish Speaking Information Center.
Ms. Coney possesses a Bachelor's Degree from Howard University, a Master's Degree in Advertising from Michigan State University and has also done graduate work at Long Island University as well as post-graduate/preliminary doctoral work at Michigan State University. She is married to Craig Coney (retired), past President/CEO of the Genesee Shiawassee MI Works! and is mother of twin daughters, Lauren and Erin.
Finally, she is proud to say that she is a graduate of Southwestern High School.
The Foundation for Mott Community College is managed by a board of community volunteers, who generously give of their time and talents to ensure good stewardship of funds the Foundation manages.
The Foundation for MCC is pleased to present the 2022-2023 Board of Directors.
New to the Board in 09/2021 were: Steve Dawes, Dr. Paul Lafia, Rev. Phyllis McCree (not pictured below), Michelle Rauch and Dr. Rajagopal Shantaram.
New to the Board in 09/2022 were: Heather Burnash, M.S., JD, Kiaira May, and Asa Zuccaro.