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South Dakota Technical Colleges Honored With Unexpected Gift

Posted on: December 16, 2020   |   Category: News
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DECEMBER 16, 2020   WATERTOWN, SD      South Dakota’s nationally recognized colleges, Lake Area Technical College of Watertown and Mitchell Technical College of Mitchell were deeply honored to receive the news that they are the recipients of significant impact gifts from philanthropist and popular novelist, MacKenzie Scott.  

The announcement, made through social media, states that 384 organizations including Lake Area Technical College and Mitchell Technical College received generous donations to assist in continuing the good work they are already doing.  The colleges will be using the donation to support transformative initiatives that will remove barriers for students and allow them the success everyone deserves.

MacKenzie Scott focused her giving on immediate support to people suffering the economic effects of the pandemic crisis but also seeks out organizations for their leadership’s track record of effective management and significant impact in their fields.  Her post also recognizes the important role played by these organizations in continuing to provide vital services during the pandemic. She also notes that these organizations are known for profound encouragement felt each time a person is seen, valued and trusted by another human being. 

Her team took a data-driven approach to identifying organizations with strong leadership teams who get results, and who have low access to philanthropic capital.  Scott identifies organizations with high potential for impact and paves the way with unsolicited and unexpected gifts given with full trust and no strings attached.

Lake Area Technical College President Mike Cartney comments, “It’s humbling to be recognized for our good work and it’s our intent to be exceptional stewards of the gift.  There is no doubt, it will impact LATC, MTC, current and future students, and citizens of South Dakota for a long time to come.”

According to Scott, “These 384 carefully selected teams have dedicated their lives to helping others, working and volunteering and serving real people face-to-face at bedsides and tables, in prisons and courtrooms and classrooms, on streets and hospital wards and hotlines and frontlines of all types and sizes, day after day after day.”  Scott continues, “We shared each of our gift decisions with program leaders for the first time over the phone, and welcomed them to spend the funding on whatever they believe best serves their efforts. They were told that the entire commitment would be paid upfront and left unrestricted in order to provide them with maximum flexibility.” 

Because Lake Area Technical College is currently in the silent phase of their Capital Campaign and in keeping with the donor’s desires, the amount of the gift will not be released at this time.



Read MacKenzie Scott’s full blog at https://medium.com/@mackenzie_scott/384-ways-to-help-45d0b9ac6ad8

About Lake Area Technical College: Lake Area Technical College is a public two-year college located in Watertown, SD.  The college was selected in 2017 as the #1 Two-Year College in the Nation by the Aspen Institute for Community College Excellence.  The 40 acre campus is home to approximately 2600 full and part-time students enrolled in 30 different programs of study both on-campus and online. The college has an 84% retention rate and 99% placement rate for graduates. Lake Area Tech is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.  Learn more at www.lakeareatech.edu