Marks family establishes scholarship to support pharmacy, education programs

By: Wylie Bell - Richmond Community College

HAMLET – Richmond Community College recently celebrated the establishment of the E. Lazelle and Judy R. Marks Endowed Scholarship to benefit students in the Pharmacy Technician program and programs that support a career in education.

The scholarship was established by Lazelle Marks, Greg Marks and Jon Marks to honor Lazelle Marks and the memory of the late Judy Marks.

“The Marks family is making a difference in the lives of our students beginning today with this scholarship,” said Hal Shuler, associate vice president for development. “Lazelle Marks is a very community oriented person who has helped many people for many years. This scholarship is another way that the Marks family has invested in this region, and we thank you very much. I’m excited to add this scholarship to the Richmond Community College Foundation, which now offers well over a hundred scholarships to our students.”

Lazelle and Judy Marks established the Medical Center Pharmacy of Rockingham in 1977 and Medical Park Pharmacy in 1997. The Medical Center Pharmacy was the first pharmacy in the area with a drive-thru and the first to computerize.

“These two pharmacies have been focused on providing quality pharmacy services with a hometown touch to the people of Richmond County for more than 40 years,” Shuler said. “They continue to strive to keep up with the most modern technologies and processes in the practice of pharmacy.”

Lazelle Marks has served on many boards over the years, including the N.C. Board of Pharmacy, N.C. Mutual Wholesale Drug Board of Directors, N.C. Association of Pharmacists Board of Directors, Pharmacy Foundation of N.C., Dean’s Board of Advisors for South Carolina College of Pharmacy and the Campbell University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, The Cole Foundation, Wingate University Board of Trustees, Richmond Community College Foundation Board, and the Board of Deacons at First Baptist Church in Rockingham.

Judy Marks passed away on July 6, 2016. She was a dedicated educator who taught for more than 35 years, 28 of which were with the Richmond County School System. She also taught Sunday school for many years at First Baptist Church of Rockingham and served on the board of the Sandhills Regional Library.

“Education was very important to her,” Shuler said, “which is why the Marks family would like this scholarship to benefits students in both the Pharmacy Technician program and students looking to make a career in education.”

The scholarship will provide two awards each academic year. It will award $500 to an eligible student in an education program. Another award will cover the cost of tuition, books and fees for an eligible student in the Pharmacy Technician program.

Greg Marks spoke about how pleased his mother would be to know her name was attached to a scholarship that would help continue her life’s work in education long after she was gone.

“Education was what she did, and the knowledge that this scholarship would be helping a friend, a family member, or maybe a child or a grandchild of one of her former students would be very appealing to her,” Greg Marks said. “My dad has always been active in the local community, but he’s also especially been a champion of pharmacy in North Carolina over his 50-plus-year career. Now that age and health has limited what he can do, he felt this scholarship was the best way he could continue that work.”

Dale McInnis, president of RichmondCC, extended his appreciation to the Marks family and noted the uniqueness of this endowed scholarship that covers two distinct fields of study.

“This scholarship is very timely because we have a teacher shortage in this county,” McInnis said. “We need more opportunities for young people to see that education is not only accessible and affordable, but a career in education is also important and valuable. We have great partnerships with great universities across the state, and our students now have opportunities to go wherever they want if their talents and abilities allow.”

McInnis said this scholarship would also help support the Pharmacy Technician program that will be housed in the College’s Kenneth and Claudia Robinette Building in downtown Rockingham.

“In this building, there will be a dedicated customized lab for training the next generation of pharmacy technicians and support staff, so the interesting combination of this scholarship reflecting two people’s great careers is in line with where we’re going at the College,” McInnis said. “I want to thank you all for helping make this possible.”

Wylie Bell is the director of marketing and communications for Richmond Community College.

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Wylie Bell

Richmond Community College