MEDIA CONTACT: Cara C. Perry
Jim and Maria McKenzie Donate $50,000 to FAU Treasure Coast Campus Scholarship Fund
PORT ST. LUCIE, FL (July 18, 2007) – Jim and Maria McKenzie of Port St. Lucie recently donated $50,000 to assist teachers and professional support staff from St. Lucie County Public Schools who are working toward their undergraduate degrees from FAU in preparation for initial state teacher certification. This is an extension of an existing scholarship that was established in a collaborative effort between FAU and the St. Lucie County Chamber of Commerce. Over the past two years, the scholarship has provided tuition assistance to more than 30 aspiring teachers.
“This scholarship program embraces the ‘growing our own workforce’ philosophy,” said Jim. “My wife and I were very interested in this opportunity to build a strong base of new teachers, to aid in the local critical teacher shortage and to help secure the educational futures of children in St. Lucie County.”
Jim McKenzie, president of Labor Finders/LF Staffing in Port St. Lucie, is very involved in area education. He actively serves on the FAU Treasure Coast Campus Advisory Board, FAU Treasure Coast Corporate Partners and the St. Lucie County Chamber Foundation Board. Jim is also proactive in the local business community as a board member for many organizations, including the St. Lucie County Chamber of Commerce, the Workforce Development Board of the Treasure Coast and the St. Lucie County Economic Development Council.
Jim and Maria have lived in Port St. Lucie for 15 years. “Through our involvement with the school system, civic organizations and business associations, we recognized the need for this type of scholarship support,” said Jim.
“By building a strong tradition of tuition assistance programs, Florida Atlantic University is opening more doors for more students,” said Gerri McPherson, FAU Treasure Coast Campus vice president. “We sincerely thank Jim and Maria McKenzie for creating a scholarship that will have a far-reaching, positive impact on the local school district.”