Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Isabella Bank pledges $40,000 to MCC’s ‘Transforming Lives, Empowering People’ campaign


Isabella Bank recently awarded Montcalm Community College a pledge totaling $40,000 to support the college’s “Transforming Lives, Empowering People” campaign.

This generous commitment provided $25,000 for the renovation of the Kenneth J. Smith Building on the college’s Sidney campus. For its contribution, a debriefing room is named on the bank’s behalf, where students and instructors meet to discuss lessons covered in the lab setting. In addition, the bank gave $15,000 to create an endowed scholarship fund to benefit a first-generation or mid-career student with a low to moderate income based on their financial aid disclosure.

Isabella Bank West Regional President Dave Seppala said the bank believes in the value of quality education and is pleased to support students in its community by supporting the college’s campaign.

The bank has always been a community bank and that means we support the community not only in our business dealings, but also philanthropically, through our time and money,” Seppala said. “Part of the history of Isabella Bank has been that we donate back. One of the key metrics we use is to look at the number of hours that we donate toward causes such as Habitat for Humanity, Montcalm Community College, Junior Achievement, United Way and others.

“When the opportunity came along for MCC and the capital campaign, our board felt it was a good opportunity to give back financially. That is one of the reasons we gave to the campaign for the room. We also wanted to support scholarships. It made sense because it was going to people who are going back to school for the first time, along with the fact that many of our employees here attend or have attended MCC,” he added.

Seppala said investing in the college is another opportunity for the bank to support the local economy.

“I hear from my customer base and manufacturers that it’s great to have MCC here because there are opportunities for folks to continue to learn and grow in Montcalm County,” he said. “This is a way to keep them on the cutting edge of technology and learning and still stay in Montcalm County and supporting our local area,” he added.

Lisa Lund, Executive Director for the MCC Foundation, said this gift is a generous demonstration of Isabella Bank’s support of the college’s mission of “Transforming lives through quality education.”

“We are so appreciative of Isabella Bank’s pledge. Their support plays a vital role in supporting the college in delivering coursework in modern, well-equipped facilities,” Lund said. “The space Isabella Bank chose to support provides a learning environment for our students, which allows them to interact with their instructors and peers in a collaborative setting.

“Isabella Bank’s scholarship support is instrumental in helping alleviate some of the financial burden of attending college, which will help students be able to focus more on achieving their education,” she added.

MCC’s “Transforming Lives, Empowering People” campaign is designed to allocate $7 million to developing programs to help students gain access and be successful at MCC.

The lead initiative of the “Transforming Lives, Empowering People” campaign is a $5 million renovation of the Kenneth J. Smith Instructional Building. The Smith Building is a major campus destination as it holds more than half of the college’s Sidney campus classroom space, its flagship nursing program, and courses in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Having opened this spring, the Smith Building is the college’s Center for Nursing & Health Careers and the Center for STEM Learning. Specialized spaces include clinical simulation labs, preparation and debriefing rooms, treatment rooms, a clinical testing and training apartment lab, science and biology labs, phlebotomy labs and specialized student learning spaces, as well as the addition of specialized equipment and technology.

In addition to the Smith Building renovation, other campaign initiatives include:

  • $500,000 toward a STEM Program Development and Technology Fund for equipment, technology and curriculum to support teaching and learning.
  • $500,000 toward First-Generation Scholarships to benefit students who are the first in their family to go to college.
  • $250,000 toward Mid-Career Scholarships to benefit middle-income students who do not qualify for financial aid, but also do not have the means to pay cash for college.
  • $450,000 toward Program-Specific Scholarships to benefit students in specific program pathways.
  • $300,000 toward the MCC Express Conductor Program to provide a point of contact (conductor) to work with students from their first point of contact with the college to the time they enter classes and throughout their time at MCC.

This summer, the campaign has entered its community phase, and the goal is to raise $500,000 by mid-fall toward the overall goal.

For more information about MCC’s “Transforming Lives, Empowering People” campaign, or to contribute, visit or contact MCCF Executive Director Lisa Lund at or 989-328-1284.



Isabella Bank has pledged $40,000 to Montcalm Community College’s “Transforming Lives, Empowering People” campaign. Pictured, from left, are Isabella Bank Stanton Office Branch Manager Lisa Ferguson, MCC Foundation Executive Director Lisa Lund and Isabella Bank West Regional President Dave Seppala.


Media contact:
Shelly Springborn
Director of Communications and Public Relations