Letter from the SMC Foundation President

Tom Atkinson
Chief of Staff
Office Location

Bookstore Annex, Room 903
58900 Cherry Grove Road
Dowagiac, MI 49047
Driving Directions

Changing lives, one student at a time

Hello and Welcome!

On behalf of the Board of Directors we thank you for your interest in learning more about the Southwestern Michigan College (SMC) Foundation.

Our non-profit, tax-exempt corporation was established in 1970 to provide assistance to SMC students who desire to enhance their lives through education and training. The goal of the SMC Foundation is to bridge the financial gap between the needs and resources of the students at Southwestern Michigan College. The SMC Foundation also supports the college in areas that are not funded through taxes, tuition, and grants.

Through the years, the SMC Foundation has received bequests and donations of varying sizes. Fundraising is performed on a continual basis through special events, annual giving campaigns and planned gifts.

Currently, we have over 170 scholarships and endowments in existence with the Foundation. Every single one of these helps us carry out our motto, “changing lives, one student at a time.” In 2016/2017, the SMC Foundation will award $306,600 in scholarships, with SMC contributing an additional $475,000 in scholarships. Since a majority of our students are financially needy based on federal guidelines, these scholarships are vitally important.

Over the years, the Foundation has also provided funding assistance to many education-related projects. Currently the Foundation is helping to raise money for the Nursing and Health Education Building expansion. For more than 50 years, SMC has led the way in nursing and health care education and provided the region with outstanding health care professionals. SMC’s nursing program has an exceptional reputation with local employers, and our graduates are in high demand.

The renovation/expansion of the nursing and health education facilities will allow us to attract and accept more students into our health programs, add new degrees and certificates, hire more faculty and better prepare students for the demands of the health care industry. We will also be able to better accommodate the needs of local hospitals and health care professionals who use SMC as a training and meeting site.

If you have an interest in donating to the Foundation, or specifically to the nursing and health education project, I strongly encourage you to contact Tom Atkinson, Chief of Staff, at 269-782-1276. I would also encourage you to stop by campus to visit the Alumni Welcome Center and History Gallery. So much has happened with the college and the Foundation in the 50 years since its inception, you have to see it to truly appreciate all the growth and changes!

Please feel free to take a look around our Community and Alumni pages. We hope to hear from you soon!

Virginia Kairis Crawford


Virginia Kairis Crawford
President, Southwestern Michigan College Foundation