The HCC Foundation was incorporated as the Friends of Holyoke Junior College when a devastating fire destroyed the city's old high school where classes had been held. The community rallied around the institution and funds were raised by selling bricks salvaged from the fire. Those funds were the nucleus of today's HCC Foundation. Fast forward fifty years and from that humble beginning we have grown into a vibrant 501 c 3 organization whose sole mission is to support the college and the many deserving students who come here seeking a better future. More than 125,000 students from all walks of life have ventured through its open doors in search of hopes, dreams and opportunities. The majority of these students have not only become successful in their fields, but they have stayed right here in the Pioneer Valley, contributing to the economic growth of the region. They are the CEOs, accountants, nurses, doctors, bankers, teachers, technicians, engineers, and computer programmers working and living throughout the Valley. Gifts from alumni and friends to the foundation have allowed us to award well over 100 endowed scholarships each year, renovate campus facilities, bring new technology into our classrooms and expand program offerings.
A few short years ago, the Foundation led the effort to outfit the newest building on campus, the Kittredge Center for Business and Workforce Development, with a lead gift from alumnus Michael Kittredge '73. This $5.2 million campaign brought much needed resources to the facility, enhanced our student scholarships and brought more resources to our library.
Private support is essential in maintaining access to quality, affordable public education for citizens throughout the region. Each year the Holyoke Community College Foundation provides a steady income stream that supplements state appropriations (less than 40% of the total budget) to the College's operating funds. A strong endowment is necessary to help fund new initiatives, support tomorrow's needs-needs that are difficult to even anticipate today-and to provide stability in uncertain economic times. Each year the Foundation seeks funds in support of the Annual Fund. In addition, we are currently seeking funds to expand the adult and family literacy services in Holyoke to address a critical shortage of those services.