The Gala-Future of Moraine Valley’s Scholarships

Moraine Valley Gala
Group of students who volunteered at le Gala Photo by: Glen Carpenter

Moraine Valley held its annual Foundation Gala on Friday February 24th, 2017 at Georgios Banquets in Orland Park.

The night started with attendees finding their seats at their tables and mingling with the other guests at the reception. The reception included roughly 300 community members, college supporters, and alumni. President Dr. Sylvia M. Jenkins delivered a keynote speech about how the college has grown from what once seemed like two warehouses to a beautiful modern campus today.

Today as it celebrates its fiftieth ‘rock-solid’ year, Moraine Valley Community Colelge claims a sprawling thirteen building campus with technology accesses nearly everywhere. Additionally, the college has added a new fitness and recreation center to exercise in.
The mission of the annual gala is to fundraise for the Moraine Valley Foundation and to raise capital for academic scholarships, classroom technology, student emergency assistance funding, and performances at the Fine and Performing Arts Center.

Moraine Valley offers several scholarships for students and has recently launched a new website that filters a student’s personal information to efficiently match them to scholarships they can qualify for. The site can be located through the Moraine Valley homepage and also on MVConnect.

During the gala there were various events going on for the guests that gave them a great opportunity to win amazing auction prizes and raffle baskets—some of the prizes included two tickets through Southwest Airlines, and more.

The gala utilized an innovative app for guests to buy their raffle tickets and make bids on the silent auction where prizes were laid out for guests to examine also. The app also gave volunteers the option to put money on their credit card if the guests wished to buy something that way.

Many student volunteers helped during the gala in an event called ‘The Heads and Tails Game’ where players had a fifty-fifty chance to win a four hundred dollar gift card from Southwest Airlines. Another event that occured during the extravagent gala was the selling of raffle tickets. Raffle tickets were sold at one for fifteen dollars and in a package of four
for fifty dollars.

A classic live auction took place during dinner during which guests raised paddles as the price went higher and higher. Some of the prizes for the auction included skybox seats to see the Chicago Blackhawks, an African safari trip, and a vacation anywhere in the world where the offering company has a hotel.
The event raised an impressive one hundred thousand dollars  of scholarship money for the student body.

The guests were served hors d’oeuvres at the beginning of the night while gala guests of age were able to buy their own drinks at the bar. Later on the guests sat down to eat dinner, which was a classy family style meal of chicken, beef, vegetables, and mashed potatoes. Afterwards the dinner was followed by cherry cheesecake for desert. The gala guests were given cookies with the 50th logo on it to celebrate the enduring school.

All of the event attendees did a tremendous job in raising funds to help Moraine Valley college students continue their  higher education. The school thanks them graciously for their assistance. Additionally, I would like to send thanks to the foundation volunteers and a very special thank you to Executive Director of the Foundation, Kristy McGreal, for her effort in making the gala possible.