For some, it was a 12-month stroll down memory lane. For others, it was an adventure in learning about this place of which they are part. For still others, it was one heck of a party.
But for everyone who was a part of TCC South’s 50th Birthday Celebration, it was a gigantic team effort that was recently recognized when the Celebration Team was accorded the Chancellor’s Employee Excellence Award in the Service to Community category.
Many team members doubtless greeted the end of festivities with a huge sigh of relief. But several months have passed, and a few of the key participants, perhaps now more mellow, shared some of their reminiscences and thoughts.
Carolyn Robertson, Divisional Dean
“For years we had a philosophy that we don’t raise money that way. To be honest with you, that’s the way the Masquerade Ball raised money. True enough, we only made $93,000, but it was our first attempt. We didn’t have as much underwriting as I would have liked. But we put our face out there and we showed everyone that a junior college, a community college can really step up just like the big ones do. And that was a nice event. That was one of the plusses. There were several people from the community there who didn’t know a thing about Tarrant County College. They just knew we were here. Since then, we’ve gotten together again for dinner with those people. So I think we’ve put our face out there some to those people. And the people on that committee had a good time. Of course, some worked harder than others, but it also showed some of these younger people how you do an event like that, and that’s a huge undertaking. In fact, I said I had been on so many boards I thought I was out of the gala business, but I’m glad we did it. It took a lot of energy, but I was able to renew some contacts in the community. The Foundation people were fabulous to work with – fabulous. So I don’t regret a bit of it at all. I’d do it again, but I’d need a year or two to relax. But I don’t think we should wait too long before we do another one.
“It was a great time to go back and look at the history of this institution. Eileen Hart did such a fabulous job with all that history and things. I don’t think another campus will ever have the kind of displays and the research that she’s done – those wonderful displays over in the SUB and SFOD 1108 – wonderful, it was just wonderful. And it was fun to go through that with her. It was gratifying for me. I know it sounds soupy and silly, but I just love this campus. This was my first full-time teaching job after I got out of college and I’ve just always had a soft place in my heart for TCC South.”
Molly Floyd, Instructor, Speech
“For me personally, the 50th Birthday Celebration was a time of remembrance and gratitude. As we went through the year and worked on the various projects and participated in the celebrations, I was aware of the many people who had committed their lives, time, and resources to making TCC South and thus, TCC a success. I had the privilege of working with many of the professors who were here when TCC South first opened. The year was a reminder of those professors and the stories they told about the first years on campus and with the students. I am thankful for the opportunity to be at TCC South as an instructor and grateful to the many who established this campus as a place where I can grow and learn with my students.
“Organizational history is always important. When an organization is not aware of its history, then the same mistakes are repeated, time is wasted and money is spent foolishly. This year was a time to realize that TCC South has been around for 50 years and has successfully navigated so many changes. Having the opportunity to visit with faculty and with students about TCC South and what has been accomplished on this campus was a valuable experience for all involved. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in the day-to-day demands that we forget that there is a much bigger picture and purpose. The 50th Celebration presented a time to remember these things.
“The 50th Birthday Celebration offered yet another opportunity for us to remind the community that TCC South is an amazing resource for so many people both young and old. As I am out in the community, I find that people know that we are here but they do not always know the many opportunities that exist for them personally at TCC South. The Birthday Celebration was another way to remind them of the tremendous resource available to so many in the county.”
Eileen Hart, Administrative Office Assistant, Library
“Working on the TCC South 50th Anniversary was a wonderful experience. Although I joined the TCC South community only 10 years ago, it was fun going back into the history and creating projects for the celebration. I had no idea when I created the temporary TCC South 50th Anniversary Display in the Library that I would be asked to create a permanent display for the Student Center, where it now resides. The six-panel historical display is located on the first floor of the Student Center and can be seen just as you walk into the entrance. A six-panel decade display highlighting events and people in each decade (1960s through 2010s) is located on the second floor just above the cafeteria. Creating the TCJC artifact collection was also a lot of fun, and I appreciate the contributions from TCC South individuals. This display can be seen in SFOD 1508C.”
Ticily Medley, Director, Counseling
“TCC South’s 50th Birthday Celebration was a grand event, indeed … well, technically, a series of events. Thinking back on the year-plus of planning, what stood out to me was the large group of people who were able to come together and celebrate the history of the campus. Involved in the planning were people from multiple generations, those who had more than one career at TCC, and people who currently or previously held a wide range of roles at the college. Everyone wanted the 50th celebration to be memorable and festive.
“As someone who had been with TCC about 12 years at the time, it was endearing to hear people reminisce about the “early days” and the great strides that had been made as a campus and as a District since the birth of TCC South. Overall, I think the events brought the Campus community together, from unearthing the time capsule to the 50th Family Extravaganza. The events were about highlighting, appreciating and celebrating the gem that is TCC South!
“The celebration also helped to enlighten the larger community about the invaluable resources that TCC South has to offer and the amazing accomplishments that have come out of TCC South. There were so many opportunities for community members to get involved, from the planning committee to the Masquerade Ball, that community members were included and their feedback welcomed. Hopefully, the community also felt valued as TCC South offered thanks for allowing us to be a part of the Forest Hill community for 50 glorious years!”
Team members were Gus Anderson, Vicki Ansorge, Grant Benatar, Shirley Bishop (retired), Madelyn Bowman, Elizabeth Branch (retired), Christy Clifton, David Clinkscale (retired), Gladys Emerson (retired), Gloria Fisher, Molly Floyd, Ana Garcia, Ernest Gines, Dana Grove, Suzanne Groves, C’Juan Gunner, Kay Harkness, Nicole Harris, Eileen Hart, Brian Johnson, Timothy Johnson, Peter Jordan, Bill Lace (retired), Monica Lea, Reginald Lewis, Triesha Light (retired), John Lundberg, Arturo Martinez, Ticily Medley, Stacey Metzler, Nicole Minor, Larry Rideaux, Carolyn Robertson, Yojana Sharma, Yolanda Sifuentes, Liz Sisk, Larry Story, Yolanda Thomas, Demetrice Thompson, Maria Valdez, and Vanessa Walker.