When friends of Donna Metke heard that a TJC scholarship was being established in her honor -- and that it would be presented to her as a surprise -- they did what friends do: They gave generously.
The Donna Metke Endowed Promise Scholarship will provide ongoing scholarships to deserving students in East Texas. The TJC Promise program will build a stronger college-going culture, produce students ready to achieve their goals in higher education and provide well-educated and trained graduates to strengthen the statewide workforce.
“TJC President Dr. Mike Metke has accomplished extraordinary things during his tenure at TJC, but we all know that these accomplishments have been made possible because of (his wife) Donna’s devoted support to both the Tyler community and TJC,” said TJC contributor Betty Bower, who led the charge in gathering support of the scholarship.
Admittedly, gathering support was not difficult, since some 100 friends and supporters immediately committed funds for the scholarship.
Bower provided the initial gift, then encouraged others to give as well. When the total reached $25,000, Jim and Diane Lestor donated a matching gift to push the endowment to $50,000.
Diane Lestor said, “Donna Metke is a such a lovely person and the TJC Promise is a great program, so we were glad to be able to provide the matching gift to establish this scholarship in her honor.”
“Donna is an inspiration to everyone,” said LaVerne Gollob, a member of the TJC Foundation Board. “Her enthusiasm overflows and she has such a passion for the students and the TJC Promise.”
The Metkes were surprised with the announcement during the TJC Foundation Board’s Feb. 27 meeting.
Donna Metke said, “It was an extraordinary experience to have an endowed Promise Scholarship given in my name; it was especially humbling to know my friends initiated the honor.
“The women of Tyler are exceptional, loving, and devoted to this community. How fulfilling to know that the next generation, through this scholarship, will be given the chance to take East Texas to an even greater level of opportunity.”
For more on the TJC Promise program, go to www.tjc.edu/Promise.