The San Jacinto College Foundation held its annual Donor Appreciation Luncheon on Wednesday, June 5, at the College's Maritime Campus.
The event serves as an opportunity for scholarship donors to meet the students their gifts served and a chance for the students to thank the donors and update them on how the scholarship impacted their success.
San Jacinto College student Zahra Cope engaged attendees with her personal story about growing up in a village in Somalia where education was not attainable, marriage was the ultimate expectation for women, and how the decision to pursue a higher education was only the first step in her long journey.
In addition to having to learn English, Cope talked about her perseverance to become a great student, the struggles she had in writing, and how none of it would be possible without scholarships she received from donors to the San Jacinto College Foundation.
"This is my final semester at San Jacinto College, and I was worried I would not be able to register for classes," said Cope, a recipient of the Hold Em and Hit Em Club and San Jac Stars scholarships. "The scholarships that I have received through the San Jacinto College Foundation have provided a great deal of financial relief for me, and I can't thank these scholarship donors enough. Without their donations, I would not have been able to complete my associate degree. Each of them are contributing a great deal to student success at San Jacinto College."
Cope will pursue a bachelor's degree in social work at the University of Houston-Clear Lake this fall.
Student Genie Bradley also gave a thank-you speech that illustrated her personal story. Both she and her husband are current students at the College, and her husband recently decided to re-enlist in the U.S. military. While she is no stranger to being a military spouse, Bradley shared that completing her associate degree in nursing will open many doors for employment as a registered nurse wherever she and her husband are stationed.
"Because donors like you believe in the San Jacinto College Foundation, you believe in people like me who want to go out into the world and make a difference," said Bradley, a recipient of the John S. Dunn Foundation, Albert and Ethel Herzstein Charitable Foundation, and John P. McGovern Foundation scholarships. "Knowing you made a positive impact on someone's life and the community is the best gift you can give someone."
Visit the San Jacinto College Foundation webpage for more information on how to become a donor for scholarships.