AT&T Awards $25,000 in Scholarships to Tampa Bay Economic Prosperity Foundation for HCC Students Enrolled in Cybersecurity Programs


June 16, 2022



Photo left to right: HCC students John Cordova and Darren Walker; Craig Richard, Tampa Bay EDC President/CEO; Dr. Ken Atwater, HCC President; Matt Mucci, AT&T’s Regional Director, External Affairs; HCC students Bassem Taki and Hamid Smith.

Ten local students will receive $2,500 each in support of their pursuit of A.S. degrees in this high-demand field

Tampa, Fla. (June 16, 2022) – In a ceremony held yesterday on the Dale Mabry Campus, Hillsborough Community College (HCC) President Dr. Ken Atwater, Tampa Bay Economic Development Council President and CEO Craig Richard, and AT&T’s Regional Director of External Affairs Matt Mucci celebrated the award of $25,000 in scholarships to be distributed among 10 HCC students enrolled in Cybersecurity programs there.

“AT&T is committed to advancing education, strengthening communities and improving lives. Our signature philanthropic initiative, AT&T Aspire, drives innovation in education to promote student success in school and beyond. I am pleased to present Hillsborough Community College and the Tampa Bay Economic Prosperity Foundation with $25,000 to assist these students in advancing their education and preparing them with skills that will benefit them when they enter the workforce,” said Mucci.

Since 2008, AT&T has committed $600 million to leverage technology, relationships and social innovation to help students make their biggest dreams a reality.

“We commend your dedication and the hard work you are putting into earning your Cybersecurity degree, and thanks to the generosity of AT&T and the Tampa Bay Economic Prosperity Foundation, we are pleased to award you with well-deserved scholarships that will help make it easier for you to complete your program and pursue a career that will change your life,” Dr. Atwater, who also serves as the Tampa Bay Economic Prosperity Foundation Chairman, said to the scholars at the ceremony.

The ten students awarded $2,500 each in scholarship funds reside in underserved neighborhoods in Tampa, including East Tampa, Central Park/Ybor City, and Uptown. The Tampa Bay Economic Prosperity Foundation, a 501 (c) 3 sister organization of the Tampa Bay Economic Development Council, secured the scholarship funding from AT&T as part of its mission to raise awareness of career training and skills development opportunities for residents in those areas, which have some of the greatest rates of poverty and lowest rates of educational attainment in Hillsborough County.

“While many Tampa and Hillsborough County residents who possess high-demand skills and degrees are thriving in our hot job market, others – particularly those from the neighborhoods our Foundation is focused on – are struggling to get ahead,” said Richard, who also serves as President and CEO of the Tampa Bay Economic Prosperity Foundation. “Completing any of these programs is a ticket to a rewarding, well-paying career here in Tampa or any other city you may move to in the future,” he continued.

HCC Cybersecurity degree programs were launched in the 2018 – 2019 school year. Currently, more than 330 students are enrolled in the college’s Cybersecurity A.S. Degree programs.

About the Tampa Bay Economic Prosperity Foundation

The Tampa Bay Economic Prosperity Foundation is a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit sister organization of the Tampa Bay Economic Development Council. The Foundation has a two-pronged mission: to bring jobs and capital investment to the East Tampa, Central Park and Ybor City, and Uptown districts of Tampa and Hillsborough County; and raise awareness of career training and skills development opportunities to residents of those areas. For more information, visit prospertampabay.org.

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