ATT-LogoTyler Junior College (TJC) dual-credit students from Arp, Chapel Hill, Lindale, John Tyler and Robert E. Lee high schools are to receive funding from a $20,000 grant provided by the AT&T Foundation. On December 5, AT&T Director of External Affairs Candice Gast presented the check to TJC President Dr. Mike Metke and Tyler Mayor Barbara Bass during a meeting of the community advisory task force for TJC’s new School of Nursing and Health Services. Duel-credit health care programs are to be one of this new facility’s most significant educational components.

“We thank the AT&T Foundation and State Senator Kevin Eltife who continues to encourage corporate partnerships and philanthropic support for education in our community,” said Metke.

“For many East Texas high school students the AT&T Scholars Program is their first step toward obtaining a degree,” said Eltife. “The AT&T Foundation has made an investment not only in our students, but in our future nurses, teachers, technicians and other highly skilled professionals.”

TJC Vice-President for Advancement and External Affairs Dr. Kim Russell went into detail explaining the grant’s significance.

“This grant will continue the AT&T Scholars Program, and will be matched by the TJC Foundation to provide $40,000 for the 2012 and 2013 academic years,” he said. “The goal of this program is to encourage more economically disadvantaged students to complete college-level courses while they are still in high school. We know that if at-risk high school students successfully complete one or more college-level courses they are more likely to graduate and have a greater chance of attaining a post-secondary degree or certificate in the future.”

Gast made clear that her company remains committed to enhancing East Texas’ students secondary education and futures.

“We are happy to support Tyler Junior College and the AT&T Scholars Program,” she said. “AT&T works diligently to build strong, connected and thriving communities where we live and work.”