More than $58,000 in grants will be used this year to enhance Panola College students’ learning experiences.

The Panola College Foundation awarded 24 grants totaling $58,653 last week as college staff gathered to mark the start of a new academic year.

“It’s a pleasure for the foundation to award these grants,” John Ray, with the Panola College Foundation said. “We appreciate the interest of faculty and staff in submitting these grants. We look forward to having even more next year.”

The $58,653 total is about $10,000 more than the foundation was able to give out last year, Ray said.

This year’s grants include:

  • A mobile device research lab for students and employees with IT Services.
  • A Whirlpool table and two TheraGun massage guns for the Kinesiology department.
  • 15 Wi-Fi hotspots and two router subscriptions shared between all three campuses for the M.P. Baker Library.
  • Two iPads and stands for students at the M.P. Baker Library.
  • GED practice exams to help increase student retention in the AEL program
  • Yoga mats, blocks, resistance bands, Zumba toning sticks and DVDs.
  • A museum field trip in the fall and spring for the Art Department.
  • A trip to a Dallas Symphony concert for the Choral Department.
  • Five new lighting instruments for the auditorium and studio.
  • A video camera to record instrumental music performances.
  • A medical lift chair, two iPads, SIMTICS Simulation Modules, four anatomical muscular models and four Littmann teaching stethoscopes for the Health Sciences Department.
  • Egg hunt prizes to increase student engagement/recruiting within Residence Life.
  • Money for the Trailblazer Retreat, a student leadership/engagement camp.
  • A satellite Shelby County store.
  • A Cosmetology Department grant for the Armstrong McCall World’s Fair Trade Show.
  • Various HVAC and electrical tools.
  • Two Cutaway Briggs and Stratton small engines and a grant to help fund the cost of a truck to pull a mobile lab for the School of Energy.

The foundation’s grants are intended to support the college’s student success initiative, Ray said. He thanked both the wider community and Panola College for their support.

“I want to congratulate the grant recipients on the submission and funding requests that met that requirement,” he said. “Let me also encourage faculty and staff looking ahead next year to determine if you have needs that these foundation grants can meet.”

Billy “Bubba” Adams, vice president of instruction at Panola College, welcomed staff at the beginning of the meeting.

“We thank you for being here and we’re looking forward to a new semester, a new year,” he said.