PERRYSBURG TOWNSHIP, OH – Owens Community College and the Rotary Club of Perrysburg are entering into a new partnership that will afford Penta Career Center graduates the opportunity to pursue higher education aspirations as the two organizations announce the establishment of a new endowed scholarship program. The Rotary Club of Perrysburg and its Foundation recently presented the Owens Community College Foundation with a $20,000 donation to fund the endowment.
“Owens Community College is honored to partner with the Rotary Club of Perrysburg and extend this new scholarship opportunity to future Penta Career Center graduates,” said Ann Savage, Owens Executive Director of Fund Development and Foundation President. “This endowed scholarship program will open the door for many area residents to pursue their career aspirations at Owens for years to come. The Owens Community College Foundation appreciates the Rotary Club of Perrysburg’s commitment to furthering excellence in higher education.”
The new scholarship will be awarded to a Penta Career Center high school graduate who has completed at least a two-year program at the school. Selection criteria for the new scholarship program will also include that the recipient attend Perrysburg, Lake or Rossford high school and achieve a minimum 2.0 cumulative grade point average. Additionally, the recipient must be able to demonstrate significant participation in community service activities during high school and financial need. Recipients, who will be selected through a process of screenings and interviews, will be assigned a Rotary mentor and must remain in contact during the term of the scholarship.
Scholarships will not have a stated amount, but are intended to provide a fully paid college education through the attainment of an associate’s degree from Owens. The Rotary Club of Perrysburg’s overall goal is to grow the scholarship program into a $100,000 endowment.
The new endowed scholarship initiative is a continuation of a longstanding partnership among the Rotary Club of Perrysburg, Penta Career Center and Owens which was forged in 2001 with the establishment of the Students Taking a Renewed Interest in the Value of Education (STRIVE) Program. The overall mission of the STRIVE Program, which is a program of Rotary International and may be adopted by a local Rotary Club, is to provide educational assistance and encouragement to high school students with the goal of improving their grades, attitudes and attendance during their senior year.
Now in its ninth year of existence, the STRIVE partnership between the Rotary Club of Perrysburg and Penta Career Center has resulted in 172 students graduating from the program. Overall, the Rotary Club of Perrysburg has provided nearly $50,000 of funding for the local STRIVE initiative. Since 2003, the Owens Community College Foundation has provided matching scholarship funds in the amount of $2,500 per year for STRIVE students to attend Owens. The collaboration among the Rotary Club of Perrysburg, Penta Career Center and Owens has grown into the Perrysburg Rotary Service Foundation Scholarship Endowment Fund. STRIVE graduates from any Penta Career Center member school district are eligible for the Rotary Scholarship.
The Owens Community College Foundation was incorporated in April 2002 and has over $1.9 million in assets. The Foundation Board of Directors currently is comprised of 25 community leaders from Lucas, Wood and Hancock counties. The mission of the Foundation and its Board of Directors is developing and providing resources to advance the College’s overall mission of serving students and the surrounding communities. The Foundation is also dedicated to removing barriers to education by providing student scholarships and supporting growth and innovation at Owens.
The Rotary Club of Perrysburg has more than 120 business, professional and community leaders, primarily from the Perrysburg area, as its membership. The current Club President is Ken Robinson and the Foundation Chair is John Welch. The Club was chartered in 1979. The Perrysburg Rotary Service Foundation was formed in 1985 and has funded over $600,000 for charitable projects in the Perrysburg community and internationally.
One of the fastest-growing higher educational institutions in Ohio, Owens Community College is a fully accredited two-year, state-assisted institution of higher education that has served Northwest Ohio since 1965. With a commitment to providing small classes, personal attention and unmatched affordability, the College serves the diverse academic needs of credit and non-credit students on the Toledo-area and Findlay-area campuses. Owens offers associate degrees that transfer to baccalaureate degrees in the Arts and Sciences and over 130 technical program areas in Agriculture, Business, Health Sciences, Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, Skilled Trades, and Engineering and Transportation Technologies. Owens students also can earn the first two years of a bachelor’s degree with a smooth transfer to any area four-year college or university. For more information, visit www.owens.edu.