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South Dakota Technical Colleges Honored with Unexpected Gift

DECEMBER 16, 2020  MITCHELL, SD   South Dakota’s nationally recognized colleges, Mitchell Technical College of Mitchell and Lake Area Technical College of Watertown were deeply honored to receive the news that they are the recipients of significant impact gifts from philanthropist and popular novelist, MacKenzie Scott.

The announcement, made through social media, states that 384 organizations including Mitchell Technical College and Lake Area Technical College received generous donations to assist in continuing the good work they are already doing. The colleges will be using the donation to support transformative initiatives that will remove barriers for students and allow them the success everyone deserves.

According to Scott, “These 384 carefully selected teams have dedicated their lives to helping others, working and volunteering and serving real people face-to-face at bedsides and tables, in prisons and courtrooms and classrooms, on streets and hospital wards and hotlines and frontlines of all types and sizes, day after day after day.” Scott continues, “We shared each of our gift decisions with program leaders for the first time over the phone, and welcomed them to spend the funding on whatever they believe best serves their efforts. They were told that the entire commitment would be paid upfront and left unrestricted in order to provide them with maximum flexibility.”

MacKenzie Scott focused her giving on immediate support to people suffering the economic effects of the pandemic crisis but also seeks out organizations for their leadership’s track record of effective management and significant impact in their fields. Her post also recognizes the important role played by these organizations in continuing to provide vital services during the pandemic. She also notes that these organizations are known for profound encouragement felt each time a person is seen, valued and trusted by another human being.

Her team took a data-driven approach to identifying organizations with strong leadership teams who get results, and who have low access to philanthropic capital. Scott identifies organizations with high potential for impact and paves the way with unsolicited and unexpected gifts given with full trust and no strings attached.

Mitchell Tech President Mark Wilson stated, “This generous gift is transformational and will provide the opportunity for growth in several of our programs to meet high-demand workforce needs in South Dakota.”

Read MacKenzie Scott’s full blog at:


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