Fall 2020 – Impact Newsletter
From the President…
Within the past year, PCC has had to overcome many hurdles in light of the COVID-19 pandemic: converting to a remote learning environment, raising emergency funding for our most vulnerable students, and most recently supporting our community members dealing with the massive wildfires in our area.
The ability to meet those challenges head-on and come up with real and sustainable solutions reflects the College’s dedication to its students, faculty, and staff.
But it was the Foundation and the Foundation Board, in particular, that came together in a time of emergency, working tirelessly to provide PCC students with the resources and security they needed in order to get through this national crisis.
I have never been prouder of the Foundation staff, its board, and the PCC community than I am today. The fact that we were able to develop the Sponsorship Program in as little as 6 months, turn to our generous constituents for support, and give over $120,000 to students in emergency funding is more than just an achievement – it’s an illustration of the Foundation’s positive impact on the community.
Though we are not yet out of the woods with the pandemic, I am confident the College and the Foundation will continue reaching out, supporting, and forging connections with PCC’s students and community.
From the Executive Director…
I was out of the country on a family vacation in mid-March when I received a phone call from my colleagues at the Foundation Office, “Bobbi, the world has changed since you left town.” They weren’t kidding.
Coming back through customs, ours was the only plane that disembarked at Houston Hobby. I was stunned by the eerie emptiness of one of the largest airports in the country. Our return domestic flight was only half-full. Indeed, the world had changed almost overnight.
Now, six months later, I still walk around a relatively empty PCC campus. Maintenance, custodial and security crews have kept vigilant on-campus daily activities, while faculty, staff and students have had to transform their bedrooms and kitchens into classrooms and offices. Students who are also parents of school-aged children are balancing their own studies with homeschooling activities.
“Zoom zoom” is now more than a reference to an automobile commercial. Business procedures had to be transformed to an online environment. Though we figured, “this is probably a good thing for us to do anyway.”
But as I lay my head on my pillow at night, my interrupted life is still stable. I’m not worried about where my next meal is coming from. I haven’t been laid off. I don’t have to balance children and studies.
In the spring and summer of 2020, I felt the “shutdown” as a disruption of business and classes. But by late summer, I began to feel the full effects of a pandemic. Family members and colleagues were diagnosed with COVID, taking a COVID test monthly was required to be back working on campus, masks and hand sanitizers were constant companions.
As I adjust to this new normal, I find myself humbled by the stories in this newsletter of students and faculty whose daily lives have been turned upside down by this pandemic and how their responses have been life-changing. I am most proud of how quickly the PCC Foundation focused on the immediate student needs and in short order made assistance available.
Enjoy this edition of IMPACT and join me in counting our blessings because “this is probably a good thing for us to do anyway.”