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Thanks to a significant contribution from presenting sponsor Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort and the generosity of more than 180 attendees on July 25, the Southwestern Community College Foundation’s “Bluegrass, Blue Jeans & Bling” gala yielded more than $51,000 that will be used to create the $1 million endowed Student Success fund.

Harrah’s presenting sponsorship allowed the SCC Foundation to put about 90 percent of funds raised directly into the Student Success Campaign – the most ambitious fundraising effort in college history.

“We are so grateful for the phenomenal support and hospitality of everyone at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort,” said Dr. Don Tomas, president of SCC. “Everyone seemed to have a wonderful evening, and we’re thrilled to have been able to raise this much money to benefit our students.”


Ever thought of starting your own business?

Southwestern Community College’s Small Business Center is offering a three-hour seminar starting at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 25, at the Jackson Campus to help prospective entrepreneurs get their ideas off the ground.

“The first step in becoming a successful business owner is equipping yourself with as much knowledge as possible,” said Tiffany Henry, director of SCC’s Small Business Center. “Starting your own business is a challenge, but you’ll increase your chances of success by seeking the right guidance and finding out what resources are available to help you.”

Like all programs through the Small Business Center, this seminar is free of charge. Registration is required.


Due to the ongoing nature of multiple construction projects on and around the Jackson Campus, Southwestern Community College officials encourage faculty, staff, students and visitors to check the college’s website and social media outlets for updates before fall semester classes start on Monday, Aug. 17.

Road construction related to the R5000 project will not be completed before fall classes begin, so there will be only one entrance into the Jackson Campus. The middle turn lane from NC Highway 116 has been shortened to roughly 2-3 car lengths, so vehicles waiting to turn left into College Drive will spill into the primary westbound lane at peak traffic times in the morning hours of school days.

Too soon to gauge the impact on local school budget.

The North Carolina Supreme Court ruled 4-3 last week that the state's voucher system, also known as Opportunity Scholarships, are constitutional, which paved the way for current scholarship recipients to stay in their schools for the coming year.

"Our review is limited to a determination of whether plaintiffs have demonstrated that the program legislation plainly and clearly violates our constitution," Chief Justice Mark Martin wrote for the majority. "Plaintiffs have made no such showing in this case. Accordingly, the trial court erred in declaring the Opportunity Scholarship Program unconstitutional."

The Supreme Court's ruling virtually rescinded the 2014 ruling of Superior Court Judge Robert Hobgood who viewed the program as problematic because the scholarships would be used to fund private schools, which are able to permit students based on an admission process, unlike public schools, who accept every student. Hobgood also originally ruled against the voucher program citing concern that private schools do not have the same curriculum and teacher certification standard as public schools.


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