Portland Community College

Portland Community College Foundation: Campaign for Opportunity PCC Foundation: Campaign for Opportunity

Pat Reese

Pat Reese in front of an airplane

“From the moment we sat down with the PCC Foundation, we knew we’d found the right partners. We are so happy to create opportunity for others who share my late husband’s love of aviation.”
Pat Reese, donor

Pat and Michael Reese were married for 56 years. After Michael passed away, Pat and her family chose to honor his legacy by creating opportunities for students who shared his passion for aviation. Pat gifted $380,000 to the PCC Foundation, creating an endowment to fund two full-ride scholarships each year in perpetuity for aviation maintenance students.

Michael began his career with Standard Oil and went on to own several other businesses, including Western Wrecker Sales, which he continued to operate until his passing in 2010. In his spare time, he devoted himself to his family and his hobby of flying and collecting various aircraft. He had a deep love for aviation and was happiest when he was on, in or around airplanes.

Pat and her family found it fitting to make a gift that honors Michael’s passion for flying and aircraft while simultaneously supporting students dreaming of careers in aviation. Pat hopes her gift will change the lives of students, give them hope for their futures and provide opportunities for those in PCC’s Aviation Maintenance Technology program.

Students enrolled in the Aviation Maintenance Technology program can expect to pay about $16,000 for their certification, which includes the tools necessary to work in the field. The intensive program requires a substantial time commitment. Scholarships help students to fulfill the requirements of the program without worrying about the financial burden of the degree.

In recognition of this gift, PCC renamed the East Hangar of the Rock Creek Campus to the Michael D. Reese Aviation Hangar. This was the first philanthropic naming of a building in the history of Portland Community College.