Thursday, September 22, 2022

Sidney State Bank supports MCC’s ‘Transforming Lives, Empowering People’ campaign


Sidney State Bank has pledged its support to Montcalm Community College’s “Transforming Lives, Empowering People” campaign with a lead gift to have the stairwell in the Kenneth J. Smith Building named in recognition of the bank.

President and COO Robert J. Byram said the bank, which has served Montcalm County and the surrounding area for more than 100 years, is proud to support the college and the community.

“The bank and the college have had a very long-standing relationship, dating back to the 1960s when the college broke ground on its first building,” Byram said. “We are excited and happy to continue to support the college, which provides so many opportunities in our community.”

Byram said he has experienced the college’s impacts both professionally and personally.

“As a student at MCC, I appreciated that it was a quality education at an affordable price, which was important to me personally and also is important for many others in the community,” he said. “As a bank, we recognize that state-of-the-art facilities, scholarships and an overall high-quality, affordable college option for our community is critical.

“Our bank is a small business. It’s nice that in a rural area like this, we have opportunities for students to develop their talent and come into our local workforce,” said Byram, who also served the college as a member of its Foundation Board of Directors from September 2019 through February 2022.

MCC President Stacy H. Young, Ph.D., said the bank’s financial support is a testament to their belief in the college and its mission of transforming lives through quality education.

“It is our belief that investing in Montcalm Community College improves the entire community, and educating the students of this county grows the economy of this community and the region,” Dr. Young said.

MCC Foundation Executive Director Lisa Lund agreed.

Sidney State Bank’s generous support of this project demonstrates their belief in the purposes of the fundraising campaign and the future of the college,” Lund said. “In addition to creating modern, professional spaces for teaching and learning, the campaign will help fund educational resources, leading-edge equipment and scholarships to support our students.”

The “Transforming Lives, Empowering People” campaign is designed to allocate $7 million to developing programs to help students gain access and be successful at MCC. It includes six major initiatives that will enhance and expand student access, MCC’s Sidney campus and positively impact our community.

The lead initiative is a $5 million renovation of the Kenneth J. Smith Instructional Building, which was originally built in 1966 and last updated in 1999. The Smith Building is a major campus destination as it holds more than half of the college’s Sidney campus classroom space, its flagship nursing program, and courses in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

Construction in the Smith Building is nearing completion and the building is expected to reopen later this year. The renovated space features the Center for Nursing & Health Careers and the Center for STEM Learning. Specialized spaces include clinical simulation labs, preparation and debriefing rooms, treatment rooms, a clinical testing and training apartment lab, science and biology labs, phlebotomy labs and specialized student learning spaces, as well as the addition of specialized equipment and technology.

In addition to the Smith Building renovation, other campaign initiatives include:

$500,000 toward a STEM Program Development and Technology Fund for equipment, technology and curriculum to support teaching and learning.
$500,000 toward First-Generation Scholarships to benefit students who are the first in their family to go to college.
$250,000 toward Mid-Career Scholarships to benefit middle-income students who do not qualify for financial aid, but also do not have the means to pay cash for college.
$450,000 toward Program-Specific Scholarships to benefit students in specific program pathways.
$300,000 toward the MCC Express Conductor Program to provide a point of contact (conductor) to work with students from their first point of contact with the college to the time they enter classes and throughout their time at MCC.

For more information, visit or contact MCCF Executive Director Lisa Lund at or 989-328-1284.


Media contact:
Shelly Springborn
Director of Communications and Public Relations