Outreach centers, Florida caverns, arts festivals, classroom buildings and hundreds of scholarships will be celebrated at the annual Santa Fe College Foundation President’s Dinner beginning at 6:30 p.m. tonight, Friday, May 29 at the Charles Perry Construction Institute on SFC’s Northwest Campus. The dinner brings together donors and supporters who enable SFC to provide programs and activities that could not be offered through support from the State of Florida. Florida House Speaker Larry Cretul, Florida Senator Steve Oelrich and Florida Representative Chuck Chestnut will attend.
“Santa Fe has earned national status in several respects and this achievement would not be possible without the vision and generosity of our donors,” SFC President Jackson Sasser said. “Tonight’s event is our once-a-year opportunity to celebrate a unique gathering of public and private partners.”
Students will be featured at the dinner. Scholarship student Ashlen Lee will speak about the opportunity she received, performances will be conducted by the Dance Theatre of Santa Fe and Santa Fe Singers, and the college’s Student Ambassadors will serve as guides and greeters.
Members of the Santa Fe Foundation Board of Directors and the college’s District Board of Trustees will attend.
Through private contributions the college has produced, offered or will soon offer:
- Centers in downtown Gainesville, Starke, Archer, Keystone Heights and this fall in Alachua. The $6.8 million center in Alachua will house the college’s first bachelor’s degree and other programs to educate students for employment in the life sciences industry, including at the Progress Center across the street.
- Scholarships for 343 students. In 1975 the college could offer only one such scholarship.
- Community assets including a Florida Cavern near Newberry for study and research, the Spring Arts House on Gainesville’s NE 1st Street to support local artists, a historical museum in Starke, and the SFC Spring Arts Festival that attracts 120,000 people to Gainesville every spring
- A Fine Arts Hall including classrooms and a 600-seat performing arts auditorium to open in 2010.
- The Perry Construction Institute – site of tonight’s event – set to open in fall 2009 to house the building construction and apprenticeship programs. This building has received national LEED certification for its energy efficiency.
- SFC President Jackson Sasser, 395-5164 (office)
- Bennye Alligood, associate vice president for college and community relations, 352-258-4718 (cell)