A benefactor has established a $100,000 scholarship endowment in the Pima Community College Foundation for students whose parent, guardian, or spouse perished in the military or as a first responder (emergency medicine technician, police officer, or firefighter).

The donor, who asked not to be identified, lived in Tucson for 23 years after a successful career as a statistics faculty member at Howard University and a clinical trials statistician for the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

“The purpose I am trying to serve is the story—not me,” he emphasized. “The thing I want attention paid to is our debt to these families and our efforts to bring their children forward in life.

“I also want other people like me to say, ‘Gee, maybe I should do something like this.’”

After setting up a college education fund for his grandchildren, the donor began thinking about those who might not have that opportunity because a parent or spouse had died while serving our country.

“I decided that I must honor our fallen heroes by trying to help their kids go to college, just as I am trying to do with my own grandchildren.”

That pledge has taken root at Pima.   “Pima is responsive to the people I want to reach,” he said. “If PCC is the one that will help them through, that’s the one for me.”

The endowment will fund a full- or part-time student’s tuition, fees and books for up to four semesters at Pima, if the student maintains at least a 2.5 GPA.  If funds are available, multiple awards may be made in a year.

The reason for his generosity is simple: “I am responsible to them, because their fathers and mothers have been responsible to me.”