Skip to main content

November 19, 2021

Consistent giving helps JCCC students succeed

Colleen Duggan, professor of nursing, began giving to JCCC scholarships through her paycheck 20 years ago because she knew even small steps make a big difference over time.

"At first, my giving wasn’t much, but it was something I could do every paycheck." - Colleen Duggan

Throughout her years at JCCC, Duggan has been a difference-maker. Her sabbatical project led to the creation of a health clinic on campus in the early 2000s. In 2014, she collaborated with Sustainability on curriculum that challenges nursing students to conserve resources while improving patient care outcomes. While continuing to teach full time in the classroom, her recent work includes incorporating state-of-the-art virtual patient software using a decision-making model of patient cases that prepares students to apply clinical judgment as they learn to “think like a nurse.”

In the spring of 2021, a grant gave Duggan the opportunity to coach student nurses, a role she has been able to shape to meet student needs. As a success coach and longtime instructor, she’s seen how stressful getting a healthcare degree can be. “In the nursing program, there is a direct correlation between minimizing outside workload and being successful,” says Duggan. Her goal in contributing to nursing scholarships has been to help students reduce outside work hours and give them more time to focus on their degree.

Duggan’s giving complements her years of teaching and supporting nursing students. “At first, my giving wasn’t much, but it was something I could do every paycheck.” Over the years, with her gifts added to gifts from others, she’s helped hundreds of nursing students.

"I really care about and admire the students who come into our nursing program. Many are first-generation college students and often single parents trying to make a better life for themselves and their family."

When Duggan learned some JCCC students weren’t getting enough to eat, she expanded her giving to include the Cavalier MealSHARE program, which provides food for students experiencing hunger. Now, she’s taking her longtime giving a step further by including nursing student scholarships in her estate plan.

“That’s the beauty of estate giving,” says Judi Reilly, Development Program Director for the JCCC Foundation. “Donors can continue to support students into the future with large gifts even though they consistently gave smaller amounts over their lifetime.”

Duggan says her giving is not so much about the amount, but the difference she’s making by meeting student needs now and in the future.

“A donor’s passion for education lives on through a legacy gift,” says Reilly. “While gifts given on an annual basis are most common, often overlooked are legacy gifts, which are the simplest charitable gifts to make with a little thought and planning.

“Think of a legacy gift, like Colleen’s, as an investment in the future – for JCCC and for our students.”