WCWC scholarship money abounds

By Kristen Tribe | Published Wednesday, September 26, 2012

SCHOLARSHIP MONEY – Associate Dean Matt Joiner (from left), Vice President of Institutional Advancement and Executive Director of the Weatherford College Foundation Brent Baker, Event Chair Marianne Henderson and Dean Duane Durrett hold a check representing the donations made at Saturday night’s Red Carpet Gala.

More than $86,000 was raised for scholarships at the Weatherford College Red Carpet Gala Saturday night.

All of that is earmarked for Wise County students, whether they attend the local campus, between Decatur and Bridgeport, or the main campus in Weatherford.

“It’s been said we can build a beautiful building, but unless we do our job inside, it doesn’t matter,” Duane Durrett, dean of the Wise County campus, said. “You are doing the job tonight. Thank you.”

The 230 people in attendance toured the new campus between Decatur and Bridgeport, enjoyed a meal catered by the Decatur Civic Center and were entertained by The Texas Connection, a jazz band, before opening their wallets to donate $86,620.

To put their generosity in perspective, an associate’s degree at Weatherford College costs $4,032.

Roy Eaton, longtime community leader and publisher of the Wise County Messenger, was presented with the Carlos Hartnett Award, named for the college’s first development officer.

It’s given to individuals for “encouraging others, by word or deed, to give from their abundance to benefit Weatherford College and its students.”

Eaton was instrumental in Weatherford College opening a branch campus in Wise County, and he and his wife, Jeannine, donated $25,000 to the scholarship fund.

Brent Baker, vice president of Institutional Advancement and executive director of the Weatherford College Foundation, said in a press release, “it’s likely Weatherford College Wise County wouldn’t exist without them, and we are very appreciative.”

In a testimonial, current student Emma Armitage said she looked forward to witnessing how these donations would affect the lives of students.

“I’m excited to see the lives of students changed, and I’m overwhelmed by what you have already given,” said Armitage, referencing donations given before the event. “If this is an example of what we can do today, imagine what the students will be able to do tomorrow.”

Other donors recognized at the event include platinum sponsors First Financial Bank of Decatur and Stephens Bastian and Cartwright LP; gold sponsors Bridgeport Economic Development Corp., Decatur Economic Development Corp., Devon Energy, Family Clinic in Bridgeport, VLK Architects and Wise County Electric Cooperative.

Event chair Marianne Henderson said Tuesday she was “overwhelmed by the generosity.”

“I felt like everyone in attendance was really focused on the mission.”

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