Lee College, Liberty ISD announce free college for 2020 graduates

Baytown, TX – The Lee College Board of Regents and the Liberty ISD school board approved implementation of a tuition supplement agreement to cover the cost of Lee College fall tuition and fees for the 2019-2020 graduates of Liberty ISD.

The agreement is an extension of the Supporting College Readiness Program developed earlier this summer between Baytown’s Goose Creek CISD School District and Lee College. As part of the agreement with Liberty ISD, Lee College will cover the cost of in-district tuition and fees for each participating student, and Liberty ISD will cover the remaining cost of out-of-district fees for each participating student. Those eligible for free tuition include December 2019 or June 2020 graduates who register full-time, or at least 12 credit hours at Lee College in the Fall 2020 semester.

To be eligible, students must:

  • Be a 2019-2020 graduate of Liberty ISD
  • Enroll in and maintain at least 12 credits at Lee College for the Fall 2020 semester
  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or the Texas Application for State Financial Aid (TASFA). 

This is a last-dollar scholarship program covering the cost of tuition and fees for Fall 2020 at Lee College, meaning the scholarship kicks in after all other grant and scholarship funding has been applied. In the event the student is awarded federal or Texas Public Education Grant money, that financial aid will be applied to the student account first. Lee College will then discount 56 percent of the balance, and Liberty ISD will be responsible for 44 percent of the remaining balance.

“We are incredibly excited to partner with Liberty ISD to help these new graduates succeed in higher education with no out of pocket costs to them,” said Lee College President, Dr. Lynda Villanueva. “It’s hard for families to justify the cost of attending four-year institutions this fall with all the uncertainties surrounding the pandemic. Especially now, the smart choice is for students to begin their quality education closer to home. With this free tuition program, students and their families have nothing to lose and everything to gain.”

The program will also benefit Liberty ISD students who choose to take advantage of it by providing encouragement and motivation for academic achievement as well as College, Career and Military Readiness (CCMR), furthering the goal of college readiness. In addition, it will support the goal of creating a local college-going culture.

“This is such an exciting new opportunity for Liberty High School graduates,” said Liberty ISD Superintendent, Dr. Cody Abshier. “The Liberty ISD Board of Trustees and district administrators are thankful to Lee College for their continuous efforts to provide practical educational opportunities to our students.  We are fortunate to be a partner with Lee College in so many meaningful endeavors, and we fully support them as they are now reaching out to our 2020 graduates with this fabulous offer.”

The Supporting College Readiness Program is a shared initiative by Lee College and local school districts to help overcome barriers faced by first-generation college going students to allow greater achievement among these groups of individuals. This program is intended, in part, to specifically target the barrier of affordability faced by these groups, and its implementation will be reflective of this shared goal.

Lee College offers more than 100 associate degree and certificate programs, as well as non-credit workforce and community education courses, that prepare its diverse student body for advanced higher education; successful entry into the workforce; and a variety of in-demand careers. With the main campus and McNair Center located in Baytown, Texas, and a satellite education center in nearby South Liberty County, the college serves a geographic area of more than 220,000 residents that includes 14 independent school districts. To learn more, visit www.lee.edu.

Presidential Honors Day list announced for 2020

Lee College recently announced its 2020 Presidential Honors Day Honorees, a tradition at the College for the past 30 years. Presidential Honors Day distinguishes the top student in each academic and applied science discipline program at Lee College. Honorees are nominated by their instructors and, in cases when there are multiple nominations, voted on by the instructors in that division or program. Students can be nominated for exceptional grades and academic mastery in the classroom, as well as exhibiting high levels of integrity and perseverance in their educational pursuit.

During the celebration, honorees’ friends, families, and instructors come together to praise their triumphs and hard-earned victories from the past year. This year, however, among virtual classrooms and social distancing, the gatherings will be much smaller and will most likely include only people living under the same roof. Even still, the title remains one of the highest honors at the College. And that is a big reason to celebrate.

“These students have worked exceptionally hard to earn this honor, and our entire community could not be prouder of them,” said Dr. Lynda Villanueva, Lee College President. “Their achievements are a bright light in the midst of these uncertain times, and we are celebrating with them even if it is from afar. I hope they know how sincerely proud we are of them and all they have accomplished at Lee College. We cannot wait to see what the future holds for these honorees.”

To commemorate this distinction, all 2020 Honorees will receive a personalized letter of congratulations from President Villanueva, and a special certificate of achievement delivered to their home address.

“These students have gone above and beyond in academic excellence, hard work, leadership, and influence in their classrooms and programs,” said Dr. Georgeann Ward, Honors Program Coordinator for Lee College. “For some students, Honors Day is the first time that they have had such recognition, and it opens up the possibilities they imagine for themselves. Although we aren’t able to gather together for the formal celebration, I hope the students understand how proud Lee College is of them.”

Congratulations to the 2020 Lee College Presidential Honors Day Honorees:

  • Ashley Bliss, Alcohol & Drug Abuse Counselors Program
  • Brittney Bomar, Computer-Aided Drafting & Design
  • Michael Bond, Process Technology
  • Kelby Buchanan, Volleyball
  • Jessica Burrows, Analytical Instrumentation
  • Victoria Burwell, Teacher Education
  • Marco Cardenas, Chemistry
  • Julio Cesar Chacon, Safety Management
  • Lesly Chavez, Sociology
  • Christina Contreras, Developmental Math
  • John T. Elliott, Electrical Technology
  • Adam Fontenot, Mathematics STEM Pathway
  • Adanna Frazier, Mathematics Non-STEM Pathway
  • Melissa Gill, Alcohol & Drug Abuse Prevention Program
  • Joey Isaac Guerrero, Computer Maintenance Technology
  • Amy Halik, Child Development
  • Scott Helms, Kinesiology
  • Nathan Howard, Applied General Chemistry
  • Jesus Rodriguez Jaime, Industrial Instrumentation
  • Pamela Johnson, Economics
  • Cynthia Justice, Health Information Technology
  • Melody Land, Vocational Nursing
  • Ryan Lara, American Studies
  • Melanie Leal, History
  • Monica Erin Lilley, SocialWork
  • Melissa Mar, Freshman Composition
  • Julio Martinez, Speech
  • Juan Nevarez Martinez, Computer & Graphics Technology
  • Cristina McMillin, Anatomy & Physiology
  • Bryan Medina, Psychology
  • Karlynn Miller, Environmental Sciences
  • Aquila Mitchell, Humanities
  • Karen Montemayor, Drafting
  • Daniel Mullins, Process Pipe Design
  • Izailah Ortuna, Philosophy
  • Izailah Ortuna, Accounting Technology
  • Richard Perdomo, Instrumentation Technology
  • Dani Perry, Sophomore Literature
  • Elizabeth Powell, Theater Arts
  • Avinash Rambarran, The Human Condition
  • Israel Robles, Photography
  • David Rodriguez, Welding Inspection
  • Andrea Rogers, Government
  • Zuleymma Saldana, Associate Degree of Nursing
  • Jeremy Salinas, Manufacturing Engineering Technology
  • Keyma Sanchez, Learning Strategies
  • Ashlyn Scheller, Business Administration
  • Aldo Simental, Developmental English
  • Larissa Solis, Art
  • Madison Steadham, Business Management
  • Grace Ann Strouhal, Music-Piano
  • Grace Ann Strouhal, Music-Vocal
  • Nicholas Washington, Music Instrumental