Each year, gifts of all sizes allow us to deliver on our mission of transforming students’ lives through high-quality education and training. On or before Colorado Gives Day—next Tuesday, December 5—we hope you consider making a donation to the Foundation to directly support students like Kimberly.
For Kimberly Jellison, becoming a nurse is not just a dream come true—it’s delivering on a promise she made to her late husband, Eric.
The Durango resident always wanted to study healthcare but never got the chance until a few years ago, when her husband was diagnosed with cancer the same week the COVID-19 pandemic hit Colorado.
“I figured out that he probably was not going to survive, and I needed to find some way to support myself,” she said. “I decided to do the prerequisites for nursing school, and I got accepted into the program one week before my husband passed away.”
As Kimberly cared for Eric in his final days, he urged her to keep going.
“He said, ‘I only want you to make me one promise: no matter what, you finish nursing school,’” she said.
At age 56, Kimberly has accomplished her goal and more. She’s completed her Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) certificate and associate degree in nursing (ADN) at Pueblo Community College (PCC) and is now working toward her Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing (BSN) that will qualify her for higher-paying roles.
Financial support has been key to her success. She’s one of over 300 students who received a scholarship from the Foundation for Colorado Community Colleges, which awarded more than $500,000 in aid this year.
“I didn’t have to work part-time because I got enough financial aid and scholarships that I could concentrate on nursing school,” Kimberly said. “It gives me that stability that if something happens, I know this is paid for.”
Supporting community colleges means supporting Coloradans, like Kimberly, and building a strong economy. Around 95% of CCCS students are Colorado residents, and the vast majority stay in state after graduation. What’s more, our 13 colleges enroll 40% of all resident undergraduate students of color in the state—including migrants, refugees, student parents, and more groups historically overlooked by higher education institutions. By donating to the Foundation for Colorado Community Colleges, you are fostering a homegrown, skilled, and diverse workforce that will keep Colorado competitive.
Presented by Community First Foundation and FirstBank, Colorado Gives Day is a longstanding Colorado tradition that maximizes your generosity. It offers the perfect opportunity to support causes you care about. When you give to the Foundation for Colorado Community Colleges today through December 5, the Colorado Gives Fund will match a portion of your donation so your impact goes even further. Visit the Foundation’s Colorado Gives Day webpage to get started or give to any of the CCCS community colleges.
The Colorado Community College System (CCCS) is the state’s largest system of higher education and workforce development, delivering thousands of programs to over 125,000 students annually through 13 colleges and 35 locations across Colorado. The System’s open-access mission ensures all Coloradans who aspire to enrich their lives have access to high quality, affordable higher education opportunities. The System Office provides leadership, advocacy, and support to the colleges under the direction of the State Board for Community Colleges and Occupational Education (SBCCOE). Join us in changing the way Colorado goes to college www.cccs.edu.
About the Foundation For Colorado Community Colleges
Founded in 1987, the Foundation for Colorado Community Colleges advances the mission, vision, goals, and objectives of the Colorado Community College System. Specifically, the Foundation actively seeks contributions from public and private sources to make scholarships available statewide, advance key programmatic initiatives, provide training and support for CCCS college foundations, and develop partnerships to implement state of the art programs that meet the workforce needs of the 21st century. Learn more at www.cccs.edu/foundation-for-colorado-community-colleges.