Charlie McCabe, Rotary International
Columbia businessman Charlie McCabe knows firsthand the value of a community college. He started college at one and his son attended Howard Community College. McCabe says, “He really excelled and took his education to a new level. He felt supported there and became very enthusiastic.” His son has since started his own music school.
Education is also a core value for McCabe’s community involvement as Rotary International Area Governor for Howard County. “Rotary has a long tradition of promoting excellence in education around the world and its goals are to support basic education and literacy, reduce gender disparity in education, and increase adult literacy.” Each of the seven Howard County clubs does this through their support of HCC. “HCC is such a center for education in Howard County and Maryland that Rotarians have been proud to attach their fundraising as well as their enthusiasm to the college,” he adds.
The clubs support HCC through individual scholarships, participation in college events, and by naming a space in the Health Sciences Building that recognizes the combined donation of the area Rotary clubs. McCabe stresses that fundraising is difficult and a challenge saying, “Each club works hard to raise money and has to be selective. When you have an institution as good as HCC, it’s a natural fit.” Scholarship recipients frequently speak to clubs about their experiences, highlighting the Rotarians’ support. McCabe says his club’s recipients “have been exceptional. You can really tell that these students put heart and soul in their education and really appreciate the support. Funds are limited and hard to raise so it’s great to get that kind of feedback, really makes a difference.”
Having a quality educational institution in the country impacts McCabe’s insurance business and he stresses the need for an educated workforce. “It’s critical in my own business and particularly in the Baltimore-Washington corridor since it has an educated and sophisticated population. People have a lot of choices. If you want them to select your particular business, they have to feel comfortable the employees know what they are talking about. ”
McCabe feels that both his and Rotary’s goals are served by HCC saying, “When you have a choice of an outstanding community college it opens additional options and gives many people the opportunity to go on to further their education.”