The QCC Foundation hosted a gala on June 15 at Mechanics Hall in Worcester, to celebrate QCC President Gail Carberry’s accomplishments and her retirement.
The gala had a Wizard of Oz theme, including a visit from the Cowardly Lion, the Tinman and Scarecrow, as well as Glinda the Good Witch. Dr. Carberry had often spoken of Dorothy’s ruby slippers, and how she brought a miniature set to her interviews for the position of president at QCC, and kept them in her office after she was sworn in.
“Sometimes, kind folks will speak to me about my impending retirement, they will say ‘You have big shoes left to fill.’ I chuckle at the thought of my successor wearing the tiny red Mary Jane’s, but fitting into those metaphorical shoes is essential for leading a community college in Worcester. Worcester is a community that is fiercely proud of its history, protects its legacies but equally pulls together to effect positive change for the future.
“Miracles happen every day at Quinsigamond Community College. I have shaken the hands of over 10,000 graduates, many of whom believe that a miracle pulled them through … but I know it was the courage of each students and the skill of the faculty and staff who helped make their success happen,” Dr. Carberry said.
The event also recognized donors to the Regional Investment in Service and Education (RISE) Campaign.
Campaign Chairperson Susan Mailman said the contributions helped leverage additional monies through the Commonwealth’s grant opportunities.
“Overall, in addition to the $3.2 mill campaign raised through donors, the RISE campaign leverage approximately $7.8 million, bringing in a total of $11 million,” Ms. Mailman said. “We want to thank all those involved for their generosity and commitment to provide students at QCC with a first-class education that includes state-of-the-art buildings and equipment.”
This included the QuEST Center on the Worcester campus, which has a FAB Lab, updated equipment for manufacturing labs and more. Also in downtown Worcester, the Healthcare and Workforce Development Center was equipped with new labs and classrooms.
Hank Stolz was the master of ceremonies at the event. The Jerry Cecco Big Band and the QCC Faculty Jazz Ensemble performed, under the direction of Tom Hebert, renowned jazz saxophonist. The ensemble includes Jim Heffernan on keyboard, John Solaperto, vocals and percussion, Jose Castillo on bass and Rick Ricardi on drums.
Portions of the event were catered by the QCC Food Service, and students in the program helped with serving.
Quinsigamond Community College also hosted a retirement party for Dr. Carberry on campus on June 21, for faculty and staff to say their goodbyes, and to dedicate the new Gail E. Carberry Gallery in the HLC.