PCC Foundation Urging Faculty and Staff to ‘Invest in Students’

During Thursday's kickoff event for the PCC Foundation's 2022-23 Annual Fund Drive, Pitt employees John Bacon, Jeff Ramey and Lee Bray (left to right) join President Lawrence Rouse in showing they are committed to investing in PCC students through the fundraiser.

WINTERVILLE—The Pitt Community College Foundation kicked off its 2022-23 Annual Fund Drive Thursday with a message encouraging faculty and staff to invest in PCC students.

Organizers of the drive, which takes place each year after fall classes begin, are hoping to exceed the $82,172 employees contributed to the PCC Foundation during last year’s event. PCC Development Officer John Bacon says the goal is to raise $100,000, with at least 75 percent employee participation.

“During Convocation, PCC President Lawrence Rouse reminded faculty and staff that students are, and will always be, the college’s priority,” Bacon said. “The Annual Fund Drive is an ideal opportunity for employees to invest in students and demonstrate to them and our community our dedication to helping people improve their life’s circumstances through education.”

PCC Financial Aid Director Lee Bray is co-chairing this year’s fundraiser, which runs through Oct. 5. With more than 65 percent of PCC students receiving at least some form of financial assistance in any given semester, she says the need is great and she’s more than happy to spread that message and show donors how their contributions make a difference.

“The foundation’s Annual Fund campaign is something I’m really passionate about, because I get to see how the money we pledge goes right back to the students,” Bray said. “Time and time again, I work with the foundation to help a student who needs just one book, a laptop, tuition or whatever for their classes and we are able to assist them, so they can focus on coursework rather than finances.”

Jeff Ramey, a PCC Health and Physical Education instructor, is also co-chairing the fundraiser and says it’s a chance for him to let his co-workers know about a “great opportunity” to help students and their families experience success for generations to come. After earning his GED from a community college and serving with the U.S. Navy, Ramey attended Central Piedmont Community College for an associate degree before transferring to East Carolina University for a bachelor’s.

“My story is just one of the thousands and thousands of stories colleges like PCC can tell due to their efforts to educate and empower people for success,” he said. “The GED I earned through a community college enabled me to serve in the military. And the associate degree I earned later on allowed me to complete the education I needed to land my dream job and be part of team and family at Pitt Community College, where I have had the great honor to serve for more than 22 years.”

Started in 1973 to receive gifts and secure external resources for the college, the PCC Foundation uses the revenue it generates to provide funding for scholarships, educational activities and educational materials that assist students and/or enhance PCC services. During the 2020-21 academic year, the organization provided more than $590,000 to PCC and its students, including nearly $270,000 in scholarships and mini grants.