Santa Ana College Foundation Month Year
A History of Success, A Future of Promise

President’s Circle Holds Inaugural Meeting

It wasn’t Breakfast at Tiffany’s or Green Eggs and Ham, but it was a memorable event for Santa Ana College and its foundation. On February 6, the President’s Circle held its inaugural breakfast with Dr. Erlinda Martinez, president of Santa Ana College.

Formed in Spring, 2007, the President’s Circle today comprises 15 members. These include Dr. Dixie Arnold, Ed Arnold, Richard Bridges, Cherie L. Bowers, Kristin Crellin (OCTFCU), Catherine Dunn-Ryan, Andrew Gonis, Mary Huebsch, Sara Lundquist, Ph.D., Dr. Erlinda Martinez, Ken Purcell (First American Corporation), Donna Scarborough, Jon Voget, and Cheryl and Jim West. It is a group of prominent alumni and friends whose annual support of $1,000 or more makes a crucial difference in ensuring that no student is denied educational opportunities due to financial constraint.

The group meets quarterly with President Martinez, staying abreast of all of the programs and expansions that are leading the growth of SAC. In addition, members are invited to special events such as the Pageant of the Trees fundraiser, President’s Breakfast Briefing, President’s Night at the Theatre, and campus events and lectures throughout the year. At these events, they will have access to the college president, the president’s cabinet, and the Santa Ana College Foundation Board of Directors, as well as key faculty members and other college leaders. They receive public recognition of their support, but most important, they have the personal satisfaction of knowing that they are playing a significant role in creating a caring, dynamic and productive learning environment at Santa Ana College.

The Santa Ana College Foundation, which conceived the idea of the President’s Circle, is committed to ensuring that no student is denied educational opportunities due to financial constraint. Its mission is to maintain, expand and enhance the educational opportunities at SAC by linking community organizations, businesses, funding sources, alumni and staff, thus preserving the college’s near century of "A History of Success, A Future of Promise."
Through a wide range of programs and the generosity of people and businesses throughout the community, the Foundation supports the college’s dedication to excellence in education. The Foundation is ensuring that the resources are in place, now and in the future, to support this unique institution which has touched the lives of tens of thousands of people who have gone on to launch successful careers in business, government, education, science, the arts and athletics.

Funds given through the Santa Ana College President’s Circle are unrestricted, which gives the college the flexibility to apply them towards its most pressing priorities and needs. Examples include:

• Faculty development and recognition
• Academic programs
• Student support
• Computer technology
• Alumni development
• Vital equipment

Faculty member Cher Carerra was the recipient of a mini-grant in 2007 from the President’s Circle. “The mini-grant allowed me to kickstart a faculty development program that had been dormant for three or four years,” she says. “It’s important to invest in people—to treat them nicely and make them aware that they are appreciated. One of the things that I was able to put together with these funds was a panel discussion on classroom management. We had a lively discussion and learned something new in a pleasant environment. We all felt like respected adults.”

President’s Circle member Mary Huebsch observes, “I am an associate professor and chair of the Speech Communication Department at SAC. I taught full-time in the ESL Department during the 1980s, raised my children during the 1990s and returned to work at SAC in my present department in 2001. I decided to join the President's Circle after hearing the inspiring student presentations at the kick-off event last spring. There are a few other faculty and staff members in the group, but most of the members are community members I am so proud of our college. SAC has done so much for so many individuals in so many different ways over the years. I want to know more about these efforts and be supportive of them.”

Dr. Martinez concludes, “The President’s Circle is a great idea, and I am proud that it was formed during my tenure as Santa Ana College president. It is important for us to develop close relationships with our most dedicated supporters. In the small group setting of the President’s Circle, members can ask questions that will help them to better understand operations at SAC, and I am able to tap into their wealth of knowledge for ideas.”

For more information about the President’s Circle, call Christina Romero at 714-564-6091.

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ALUMNI PROFILE
Juan Valdez

When Juan Valdez first arrived in the U.S. from Mexico City, he rented a room in a house near the Continuing Education Center (CEC) of Santa Ana College. One of his roommates told him, “You are an intelligent young man. You should apply for ESL classes at the college nearby.” The roommate advised Juan that enrolling at the college would be a good way for him to meet people, and encouraged him to arrive early for enrollment.

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