Make a Difference in a Student’s Life with Giving Tuesday

This #GivingTuesday you can make a difference in the life of an ICC Student like Savannah Merrill.

Marilyn and Bill Bates and Savannah Merrill
Marilyn and Bill Bates, donors for the Ryan Matthew Bates Memorial Endowed Scholarship, pose with scholarship recipient Savannah Merrill at the ICC Educational Foundation Community Celebration held at Embassy Suites on October 19, 2017. Generous gifts such as those from the Bates family allow students like Savannah to pursue their dreams without the burden of debt.

Savannah knew from a young age she wanted to be a nurse, but growing up she realized achieving a higher education would come with many challenges and hurdles. Savannah’s mother struggled as a single parent raising three children on her own. Growing up her mother instilled in her the value of education, as she wanted better for her children. Things became more challenging when Savannah began to experience health issues that would require her to undergo multiple surgical procedures. These experiences further developed her desire to become a nurse working in pediatrics.

Determined to change the trajectory for her future and to give back to her mother for all she provided, Savannah knew a college education was essential. She enrolled at ICC and began her educational journey to become a nurse. Unfortunately, as she prepared for her third semester her world was violently shaken. Savannah’s mother was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer. The doctors’ diagnosis was grim. Savannah was only 19 years old. She said, “I didn’t know what to do. I was barely an adult. I was so overwhelmed by this news and I thought about dropping out of my classes. I went in and spoke with my instructors and they were all so completely accommodating.”

Savannah knew additional financial obligations would be placed on her family. Upon hearing about the scholarships and emergency support offered at ICC, she jumped at the opportunity and applied. Savannah is extremely grateful for all the doors that have been opened because generous donors chose to invest in her life.

Savannah’s mother always taught her to be a strong independent person. On September 24th, she needed that strength more than ever, as Savannah would be saying her final goodbyes to her mother.

“I can certainly say I have experienced the widest range of emotions this past month – fear, uncertainty, sadness, despair, but ultimately hope. This kind of hope is fostered by the kindness of others, for me in particular, the kindness of my scholarship sponsors Mr. and Mrs. Bates and the memory of their beloved son, Ryan, who fought a courageous battle against cancer…just like my mother. It is people like you who make the world go around. I am so overwhelmed with gratitude for this gift and I intend to use it as a way of pressing forward. Thank you to all the donors for doing the same for the students of ICC, providing us all with the knowledge that our future is now!”

Consider giving a gift to the ICC Educational Foundation supporting ICC student scholarships, classroom technology and much more.

Make a donation to the ICC Excellence Fund (Area of Greatest Need) today!