Anonymous Donor gifts $200,000 for Drake State Scholarships

February 10, 2022

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. -- Students at Drake State Community & Technical College will have access to new scholarship dollars over the next year thanks to an anonymous $200,000 donation.

“Receiving the email about this gift to the college was both a pleasant surprise and welcome recognition of the good work of our faculty and staff,” said Drake State President Dr. Patricia G. Sims. “So many students will benefit from the scholarships funded by this donation.”

The anonymous benefactor chose Drake State because they admire the college’s growth and development over the past few years and the school’s rapid response to the pressures of COVID-19 and increased need for skilled workers in today’s workforce.

“At Drake State, we’ve worked hard to develop the programs students need to be successful,” Sims noted. In the past few years Drake State:

  • Became the first and only Historically Black Community College to be awarded a Cooperative Agreement Notice from the NASA/MSFC Minority University Research and Education Project (MUREP) in support of NASA's Moon to Mars Planetary Autonomous Construction Technologies.
  • Was awarded a $1.3 million NASA/MSFC MUREP grant to develop a STEM pipeline for minorities and underrepresented populations.
  • Increased enrollment and retention rates despite the challenges colleges faced from COVID-19. Of note, Drake State saw its completion rate increase by 92.75% since 2020, including a significant increase in short-term certificate awards, showing the call for workers to upskill and return to the workforce.

The donor also expressed interest in supporting Drake State's work with Veterans and military families and applauded the college's ability to provide these students with an extra measure of attention.

The nature of this donation will allow the college to remove financial barriers for many students completing short-term certifications or academic degrees.

“We are humbled by the faith shown to our institution and look forward to reporting inspiring success stories about students benefitting from these new scholarships in the months ahead,” Sims added. “I invite other individuals and businesses in our community to learn more about the good work we are doing and step up to support our efforts.”