SCC Names Center for Hatchers
BY KAREN MANNING
Special to The Pilot
Jack and Nell Hatcher have shared a life-long commitment to education.
They have given generously of themselves and their resources to help Sandhills Community College students succeed and help those less fortunate to advance their dreams of a college education and a better life.
In recognition of their commitment to Sandhills Community College and its students, the board of trustees recently named the Center for Student Services in their honor.
The Hatchers' connection to the college began in the early 1990s when they reached out to a young man who was working for them tending their yard at their home in Pinehurst. He was struggling to make ends meet, and the Hatchers asked him if there was any way they could help him.
He told them that he was trying to complete his turf management degree at Sandhills Community College. The Hatchers offered to help sponsor him, and he became the first of many others who would benefit from the Hatchers' generosity through the Sandhills Community College scholarship program.
The Hatchers still see him often as he works at the Country Club of North Carolina, where he helps oversee the club's two golf courses.
The Hatchers said that it was amazing how just a little help could change a student's life.
Nell Hatcher recounted a story that she said was a very moving experience. She learned from a member of the Sandhills staff about two culinary arts students who were at risk of dropping out because they were having a hard time paying for their final semester.
The Hatchers obviously passed their passion for philanthropy and education on to their children, and upon hearing the story of the students in need, their daughter, Hayley, offered to help with the students' expenses.
At a dinner on campus later that year, the two teary-eyed students thanked the younger Hatcher. Nell Hatcher said that there was no doubt those students' lives was changed by their daughter's gift.
A relatively small amount of money can make an immense difference - which the Hatchers said is what has always impressed them the most when giving to scholarships for students at Sandhills Community College.
In addition to the six named scholarships the Hatchers have established, they have also been very generous supporters of the SCC Guarantors Program. They said they believe strongly in the importance of a quality education in both changing people's lives and improving the community where they live.
The Mike McBride Scholarship is named in honor of a friend of the Hatchers who died of cancer at the age of 53. The Hatcher Family Scholarships are named after Jack and Nell's four children: Tere, Barbara, Jack Jr., and Hayley, as well as for Nell.
The Hatcher Family Endowed Scholarships and Mike McBride Endowed Scholarship are awarded annually to deserving students enrolling full time in any degree program. Selection is based on merit, need and potential for success. Students may receive the scholarship for a second year if qualified.
Anyone interesting in supporting scholarship programs at SCC can contact Rick Smith or Germaine Elkins in the SCC Foundation office at (910) 695 3716.
Karen Manning is director of marketing and public relations for Sandhills Community College.
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