Dr. Bennings attends 2023 State of the Union as Congresswoman Bonamici’s guest
Photos and Story by James Hill
Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici’s guest for Feb. 7’s 2023 State of the Union Address by U.S. President Joe Biden was a familiar face to Portlanders — Portland Community College President Dr. Adrien Bennings.
Bonamici, a community college graduate and senior member of the House Education and Workforce Committee, has long partnered with PCC to increase access to higher education and expand career pathways. She successfully worked with Dr. Bennings to secure $910,000 of Community Project Funding for PCC’s semiconductor and advanced manufacturing workforce pathway, which will make it possible for more students to get high quality jobs in these critical fields. The funding will be used to support students through tuition scholarships, equipment, and basic needs support, as well as for the professional development of educators and faculty.
“I’m thrilled that Dr. Adrien Bennings will be my guest at the State of the Union,” said Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici before the event. “Community colleges play an essential role in our communities, and open doors to new opportunities for individuals and families. I would not be where I am today without my time at Lane Community College, and I am grateful for Dr. Bennings’ commitment to making higher education more accessible and equitable. We have a remarkable opportunity to leverage the power of community colleges during the implementation of the CHIPS and Science Act, and I am glad to support PCC’s work to help more Oregonians access quality jobs in the semiconductor and advanced manufacturing fields. I look forward to continuing to work closely together on this effort, as well as to make higher education more accessible, address student hunger, and more.”
Dr. Bennings has served as the President of PCC since the summer of 2022, and is PCC’s first permanent female president in its history. She has taught courses in human resources development, academic development and retention, and small business development. Dr. Bennings has held progressively higher-level positions in higher education for more than 15 years. She will attend the State of the Union in person.
“I would like to thank Congresswoman Bonamici for this opportunity to be her guest for President Biden’s State of the Union Address and her tireless support for community colleges,” said Dr. Adrien Bennings, PCC president. “I’m thrilled at the opportunity to highlight the great work and collaboration that institutions like PCC provide to people from all backgrounds. Her leadership and work have enabled us to increase partnerships and expand outreach, support and training on many issues, including advanced manufacturing workforce development.”
In addition to the State of the Union, Dr. Bennings attended events and conferences associated with community college advocacy, including visiting with U.S. representatives and senators in PCC’s district.