Administration

MCC Essay Winners Featured in Herald-Tribune

(Bradenton, Fla., May 8, 2007) - Winners of a Manatee Community College's (MCC) 50th Anniversary Essay Contest were featured in a May 6 Herald-Tribune newspaper article. Read winning essays as published in the Herald-Tribune.

A cash prize of $2,500 was presented to first-place winners in four different categories to present to the MCC department of their choice. The prize money was contributed by MCC Community Ambassador Graci McGillicuddy and her husband, Dennis. The media sponsor was the Herald-Tribune Media Group.

MCC alumni Jeremy Doerrfeld and Starloe Galletta tied for the first-place award in the alumni category. Katherine Bernal won in the current student category and Edmundo Delgado won in the friend category. Tom Dignam, of Key Agency, Englewood and North Port, won first place in the business partner category. Honorable mentions included alumna Helen Tomlinson, current students Carmen Miranda and Carolyn Webber and friend Mary Farr.

Contest participants were asked to tell their MCC story by completing the phrase, "Thank you, MCC, for …" A panel of community volunteers selected the winning entries. Bernal, Tomlinson, Doerrfeld and Galletta read their award-winning essays at Spring 2007 commencement exercises held May 4 at the Manatee Convention Center.

The Winners:

 A design engineer for NASA's Space Shuttle program, Jeremy Doerrfeld  graduated cum laude from MCC in 1998 and went on to the University of Florida, one of the nation's top engineering schools.

Starloe Galletta teaches drama at Rowlett Magnet Elementary School in Bradenton. She graduated with honors form MCC in 1999.

Originally from Colombia, South America, 24-year-old Katherine Bernal hopes to earn an associate in arts degree at MCC next fall and then pursue a bachelor's degree in social work at USF Sarasota-Manatee.

An Ellenton resident and multicultural specialist for MCC's College Reach-Out Program, Edmundo Delgado spent most of his childhood and young adult years in Honduras before moving back to the United States, where he was born. He is a former U.S. Air Force reservist and has an associate in arts degree from MCC.

Tom Dignam, along with wife Annette, is a long-term supporter of MCC. The couple contributed funds to equip a classroom in the Professional Development Center at MCC Venice which was designated the Dignam Family of Englewood Math Classroom.            

Mary Farr, 74, came to Bradenton from Indiana. She has taken a variety of courses at MCC in such topics as oceanography, the earth's inner core and outer space.   

Carmen Miranda, 25, is vice president of the MCC Venice Swamp Scribes, a creative writing club, and competed in the MCC Idol talent contest held as part of the college's 50th anniversary community celebrations.

Now a resident of Winston-Salem, N.C., Helen Tomlinson graduated from what was then Manatee Junior College in 1974 and went on to get an associate in science degree in nursing. Subsequently, she earned bachelor's and master's degrees at the University of South Florida.            

Carolyn Webber, divorced and the mother of four, came back to college in the summer of 2004. She earned an associate in arts degree in May 2006 and is currently enrolled in the Dental Hygiene Program.

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