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Scholarship Endowment Established to Honor Traverse City Educator

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The Ferris State University Doctorate in Community College Leadership National Advisory Board has established a scholarship endowment in recognition of Roberta Teahen of Traverse City for her extraordinary contributions to and leadership of the DCCL program.

Teahen is the founding director of the DCCL program and former associate provost and dean of Extended Learning at Ferris. Before joining Ferris, Teahen was a faculty member, division director and occupational/workforce dean at Northwestern Michigan College in Traverse City for 30 years. In 2020, Teahen was recognized as a Fellow of NMC, an award that is the college’s highest distinction to honor a person who has served the college and/or the community.

Peg Lee, president emerita of Oakton Community College in Des Plaines, Ill., and member of the DCCL National Advisory Board, said, “Robbie’s vision for the practitioner-oriented program, her commitment to hundreds of students through the first 10 years, and her engagement as both director of and teacher in the program helped shape leaders in the present and for the future of community colleges in this country.

“It is clear to many of us who have worked with Robbie that she leads with soul – caring immensely about both the mission of the DCCL program and all of those who are part of the program. She will continue to teach in the program and to use her considerable gifts and talents in the service of community college leadership. We should all be proud of and grateful for all that Robbie has done and will continue to do.”

On Wednesday, April 14, Ferris will hold its annual day of giving, “One Day for Dawgs,” and individuals interested in donating to the Roberta C. Teahen Scholarship Endowment will have the opportunity to have their gifts matched through The Ferris Foundation’s Ferris Futures Scholarship Challenge.

Megan Biller, current director of Ferris’ DCCL program, noted that there are few scholarship opportunities for doctoral students, so the creation of the Teahen scholarship endowment will be an added incentive to DCCL students, who need financial assistance, to continue their education.

Biller said the DCCL program is celebrating its 10th anniversary, with more than 200 graduates representing 28 states and 103 colleges and serving in varying positions. These positions include presidents, vice presidents, deans, directors, faculty and coordinators, advisors and technologists.