Reposted with permission from the Daily Mountain Eagle
The Walker College Foundation, Inc., a Foundation which has its roots in the history of the former Walker College, continues to support education by providing scholarships to deserving students and dedicating its services to the Walker College campus of Bevill State Community College.
In an effort to grow and have more of an impact throughout the community, the Foundation recently hired Holly Trawick as its executive director. Trawick worked at BSCC for approximately 13 years and has been heavily involved for a number of years in local charities and nonprofit organizations. Her experience in fundraising, community service, marketing and public relations, including her background in education, all combined to make her the perfect candidate for the job.
Almost a month into her new position, Trawick has gained intimate knowledge on the background of the Foundation. She explained the Foundation was first established in December 1993 before Walker College, a private two-year institution, merged with the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 1994.
“The physical plant and educational responsibilities of Walker College were transferred to UAB, and it became UAB-Walker College, but the prior charitable contributions fund became Walker College Foundation, Inc., a nonprofit Foundation,” Trawick said. “In 1998, UAB transferred the assets back to Walker College, and then Bevill State Community College acquired the plant and educational responsibilities. The Walker College Foundation then changed its mission to supporting the Walker College campus of Bevill State Community College.”
The Walker College Foundation provides total annual scholarships of approximately $150,000 each year. According to Foundation information, incoming freshmen or returning sophomores in this area may apply for Walker College Foundation scholarships by completing the Bevill State Community College Scholarship Application. There are a number of scholarships that pay for a student’s tuition, fees and books.
In addition to scholarships, the Walker College Foundation, Inc., also, from time to time, assists the college with other needs. Most recently, the Foundation provided funds to purchase new seating in Bevill Hall Auditorium and donated property for a much-needed parking area.
The Walker College Foundation, Inc., Board of Trustees are George Deavours, Alan Berry, Dr. Doyce G. Briscoe, Marthanne Brown, Steve Byars, Dr. Stanton “Stan” C. Eggers, Eddie Jackson, William B. Long, Fred May, Al McAdams, Dr. Jack L. Mott, Lawson W. Murphy, Dr. David J. Rowland, Ronnie Shaw, Dr. Jerald M. Sherer, Al Simmons, Sue Ellen (Rowland) Summers, Brent Thornley and Becky Tracy.
Trawick said the trustees and the Foundation as a whole are dedicated to helping students who want to obtain a degree in higher education. She added that the Foundation has a “strong and healthy” fund of approximately $8 million.
“They want to grow the Foundation to do even more for the community and to make a difference,” Trawick said. “... Getting an education opens doors, provides opportunities and changes lives.”
William “Bud” Long, one of the trustees, said Trawick will be “coordinating everything that happens in our Foundation from the standpoint of raising additional funds for the Foundation, awarding scholarships and everything in between.
“We had a discussion among our board members and came up with some possible candidates, and she was one of them. We went through an interview process and it became pretty obvious that she would be a great person to hire,” Long continued. “Our board decided we had reached a point where, because of daily routines and activities, we could not devote enough time individually to operate and run our Foundation like we think it ought to be operated. In addition, we want to make sure that we are being responsible with a Foundation that would not exist without the unselfish efforts and hard work of Dr. David Rowland, who continues to serve on the board of trustees.”
Trawick said the Foundation was built on the “rich and vibrant history of Walker College” and that still resonates with members of the community. She is excited to be a part of a growing Foundation and adding to its vision.
“I am so honored to have this opportunity to work with this outstanding group of community leaders who believe in making this community stronger,” Trawick said. “... There is so much potential for this Foundation to make a difference in so many lives through these educational opportunities, and I’m excited to be a part of all the possibilities that are out there.”