North Central Missouri College Foundation announces the fall 2020 recipient of the Bill Ausmus Faculty/Staff Mini-Grant. Student Support Service (SSS) Assistant Director Tocarra Williams’s proposal for assistive technology for students with learning barriers has been granted full funding.
Mrs. Williams’s grant application requested funding to purchase two digital tools to assist students with dyslexia and other learning disabilities. The Scanmarkers have an integrated text to speech function that allows the user to hear the printed text being read back to them in real-time while being scanned to generate typed text on a PC or other device. Such tools are needed to help students with learning barriers study more confidently and effectively. SSS serves many students who have disabilities and also have low-incomes. The Scanmarkers would be available in the SSS Lab and for short term checkouts. Priority will be given to those with documented learning disabilities, but all 160+ students in SSS (all of whom are either first-generation and/or low income) will be given the opportunity to use these tools.
The Bill Ausmus Faculty/Staff Mini-Grant is in honor of Dean Emeritus Bill Ausmus. Bill joined Trenton Junior College in the fall of 1967. During his 20-year tenure, he wore many hats, including Head Basketball Coach (1967-1972), Athletic Director, Director of Student Personnel, Dean of College, and after the legal separation in 1986 from the Trenton R-IX School District, Assistant to President. When Bill retired in 1987, a fund was created to promote faculty/staff development at the College, and those funds have grown to allow a regular disbursement by the NCMC Foundation. In 1990, Bill was granted Dean Emeritus status by the NCMC Board of Trustees. Bill recently passed away on November 1st, and his family designated memorials to the NCMC Foundation for the mini-grant in his honor.
“Bill understood that not only do NCMC students have needs but also faculty and staff and their departments,” commented NCMC Director of Development Alicia Endicott. “Needs and opportunities arise outside the regular budgeting scheduled for a department. The Bill Ausmus Faculty/Staff Mini-Grant allows for those opportunities to still be realized.”
The Bill Ausmus Faculty/Staff Mini-Grants are awarded during the fall and spring semesters to benefit programs and departments with equipment, programming, or staff development that would not typically be provided for the operating college budget. Those interested in contributing to the Ausmus fund or have questions regarding the NCMC Foundation can contact NCMC Director of Development Alicia Endicott at 660-357-6403 [email protected].
Photo (L to R) Tocarra Williams and Alicia Endicott