Jim Aycock Named MDCC Development Foundation Executive Director
Jim Aycock wasn’t the first in his family to matriculate through Mississippi Delta Community College. His great-aunt, Irene Aycock from Caile, was actually in the school’s first class in 1925. (Even though the school’s inaugural annual said she was from “Kale.) Jim’s jaunt up Highways 49 and 3 to Moorhead from Caile was made a bit smoother with scholarship help. The educational path his great-aunt traveled nearly 100 years ago, now is being made easier for many students to come as Jim was recently named the Executive Director of the MDCC Development Foundation after serving as its Interim Director.
Randy Randall has served on the MDCC Foundation Board for over 25 years and has chaired the Board for the last ten years. He feels Jim is a good choice for this position.
“Although this is totally new professional arena for Jim, I have been impressed with his commitment since he took over as interim director in July 2020,” Randall said. “I have seen Jim’s passion and I have seen his work ethic. He is a product of MDCC and has deep loyalty to the school.”
Randall explained the significance of the Foundation’s work with MDCC.
“The Foundation’s focus is on raising monies for the college, thus enabling us to give back to the school through scholarship programs and other special needs of the college which are not in the annual budget,” he said. “We serve a wonderful purpose. I think this purpose excites Jim and I think he is ready to roll up his sleeves and partner with former alums and businesses in our region. He wants to educate them on the many positives of MDCC and encourage them to give to our Foundation.”
“I want to thank the Foundation and Alumni Boards for their support and commitment to MDCC. It is a pleasure to work with so many dedicated individuals. It’s truly inspiring.”
Employed with MDCC since 2007, the 1995 Trojan alum and 2015 Mississippi Valley State University graduate, headed up the Information Technology Department before taking over as Interim Director of the Foundation in 2020.
Aycock lives in Caile with his wife of 21 years, Jackie – who also serves as an Administrative Assistant to the Nursing Department. Their daughter, Hannah, will follow the Aycock tradition of traversing from Caile to Moorhead for higher education. And, yes, she’s won a full ride garnering scholarships of her own including a Trojan Cheerleader scholarship.
Now in charge of scholarships, Aycock understands the difference the foundation makes in helping students from all walks of life get into a classroom via a scholarship. He was challenged to come be part of MDCC by a former staff member.
“(The late) Mr. Sherman Stauffer is a big reason I even came to college,” Aycock said. “I wasn’t so sure. But he hand-delivered me an application and told me to fill out and be there on registration day. He also told me he would help me get some scholarships to help with tuition. Mr. Stauffer kept his word because my second semester I received the Johnny Russell Scholarship. Now I get an opportunity to pass it on as Mr. Stauffer did for me.”
In his short time as Interim Director, Aycock has already helped create several scholarships that honor alumni, teachers and friends. He’s always looking to add to the scholarships in either the creation of or in funding existing ones.
“Our students need our help,” he said. “Because of declining financial support from the state and federal government, tuition costs continue to rise. It’s vital that the Foundation provides private scholarship support. I’m committed to increasing the number of scholarships available to our students. We award over $150,000 in scholarships and school support each year. We have plenty of room to grow due to the needs that increase each year.”
After spending 14 years in the Information Technology department, he notes it was nearly a 180 degree turn to take over the Foundation Director position.
“The old saying if you want to hear God laugh, tell him your plans. Well, that couldn’t be truer for me,” he said with a laugh. “I enjoyed working in the Information Technology Department. But I truly feel this is where God wants me to serve at this point in my life.”
More of his responsibilities include directing the MDCC Alumni Association. That job entails communicating with alumni, raising funds and keeping everyone connected to their alma mater. Alumni Association President Jonny Spivey has been impressed with Aycock’s short time on the job.
“Jim is a true, rooted-in Trojan. He took over as Alumni Director in 2019 and has been doing a fabulous job,” Spivey said. “Randy and I are both looking forward to continuing working with him.”
Spivey noted that Aycock, despite COVID, was able to have “Trojan Tailgate and plans are underway for our annual golf ‘Scramble for Scholarships.’ I have enjoyed working with Jim and he has a good knowledge of what he’s doing. He has a lot of good ideas about how to go about his job. He has a good understanding of how the college system works and a good understanding of the needs of the college, foundation, and the alumni.”
The Mississippi Delta Community College Development Foundation is a 501(c) 3 charitable organization and distributes over $150,000 per year for student and school support. Established in 1991, the foundation has grown its endowment to over $2.8 million through the generosity of businesses and individuals that believe in the foundation’s mission. To learn more about how to support or create student scholarships, reach out to Jim Aycock at 662.246.6274 or email@example.com.