NORFOLK, Neb. – Northeast Community College has been featured in an article in a national publication on the philanthropy of Mackenzie Scott – the author who has given billions of dollars to various organizations over the past year.
College President Leah Barrett is quoted in the article in the June 21/28 edition of Time magazine, “Mackenzie Scott gave away $6 Billion last year. It’s not as easy as it sounds.” The piece, written by Belinda Luscombe, an editor-at-large, focuses on Scott’s life and details her $6 billion contributions to hundreds of organizations across the country in 2020.
Barrett, one of a handful of representatives of organization’s who have benefitted from Scott’s generosity and interviewed for the article, spoke of how she first learned that a $15 million donation would be forthcoming to the College after she received an unsolicited email prior to the Christmas holiday from a representative of an unnamed philanthropist.
“Barrett was told Scott believed in her and her ability to make the right choice for the money,” the article reads. “I said, ‘I’m sorry, I don’t mean to be rude but this is crazy. Help me confirm the legitimacy of this,’” says Barrett. “And so, she sent me to the Medium post.”
Scott wrote two articles on medium.com that detailed her gifts, one was in July 2020 after she donated $1.7 billion to 116 organizations and the other came in December after she contributed $4.2 billion to 384 beneficiaries, including Northeast. The $15 million donation is the largest single donor contribution in the College’s history.
Scott said funding came after she and her team took a data-driven approach to identify organizations, including those providing higher education and workforce training. The team chose organizations with strong executive teams leading effective organizations that have a high potential to impact those who are struggling, especially those who have seen their lives upended by the pandemic. Scott said the carefully selected organizations have dedicated their lives to helping others, serving “real people” face-to-face, day-after-day to alleviate suffering of those hardest hit by the effects of COVID-19.
All organizations who received donations were told that there are no strings attached as to how the funds may be used. The Northeast Community College Foundation placed Scott’s gift in an endowment to support student scholarships and student success initiatives across the College’s 20-county service area.
One area the funds will be used beginning in Fall 2021 is through the new College Access scholarship program. The program is available to help enroll low-income, underserved students. Northeast expects to assist approximately 40 students in the upcoming academic year with the cost of tuition and fees and $500 towards books.
To learn more about the College Access scholarship, visit northeast.edu/financial-aid-and-scholarships/scholarships/college-access-scholarship.
The Time article may be accessed online at time.com/6050873/mackenzie-scott-profile/.
PHOTO ID: Time magazine illustration. (Illustration by Agata Nowicka for TIME; Presley Ann—Getty Images)