Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Midland College honors scholarship recipients

• Midland College recognizes recipients of the Bill Pace Cogdell Scholarship

By Rebecca Bell
Dean of Community Relations & Special Events

On Monday, June 12, Midland College (MC) hosted a “Recognition & Awards Ceremony” honoring recipients of the Bill Pace Cogdell Scholarship. The event was held in the Midland College Scharbauer Student Center Carrasco Room. Fifty-one students were honored for being on the Dean’s List or President’s List at Midland College or University of Texas of the Permian Basin (UTPB) and graduating with baccalaureate degrees, associate degrees and/or technical certifications during the 2016-2017 academic year.

The scholarship funds tuition, fees and books for students at Midland College. Once a student has graduated from MC, the scholarship continues to provide funds for students who want to pursue a bachelor’s degree in organizational management at MC or for students who wish to transfer to UTPB.

Hector Villareal with MC President
Dr. Steve Thomas
Keynote speaker was Hector Villareal, who first entered MC’s Cogdell Learning Center as a high school dropout taking classes in order to earn a GED equivalency diploma. After receiving his GED diploma, Villareal continued taking courses at MC and received an associate degree. In December 2016, he graduated from UTPB with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics and is now working on a master’s degree. Villareal said he often had to walk to classes because he couldn’t afford a car. The Cogdell scholarship enabled him to obtain both associate and bachelor degrees. During his presentation, he also praised the encouragement and support he received from staff at the Cogdell Learning Center.

“For many of these students, the Cogdell Learning Center has been their first encounter with higher education,” explained Karely Noriega Villanueva, associate director of the Cogdell Learning Center.

“Some of them came to Cogdell to complete their GED; others first came here to brush up on computer skills in our free computer lab. Once they meet with an advisor and realize that a college certificate or degree is within their grasp, they are eager to begin to take classes, and we are so delighted that the Bill Pace Cogdell Charitable Trust believes in helping these students.”



About Bill Pace Cogdell

Bill Pace Cogdell didn’t have an opportunity to attend college until he was in his 70s. However, when he did, he took many courses at MC. In 1992 after his retirement, Cogdell helped fulfill MC’s dream of establishing a presence in South Midland by donating buildings on Florida Street to house what is known today as the Cogdell Learning Center. Mr. Cogdell passed away in 1994 at the age of 82. In 1999, the Bill Pace Cogdell Charitable Trust was established, making possible the dream of attaining a college education for many individuals who might not otherwise be able to attend college.

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