Inside the lobby of Austin Community College (ACC) Elgin Campus, Building 2000, large steel letters spell out a tribute to Dr. Suanne Davis Roueche. A national leader of the community college movement and philanthropist, Roueche dedicated her life to student success. ACC honored her legacy in a dedication ceremony Monday, April 29.
“She understands the journey necessary for students to be successful. She understands the struggles that they go through in life — what it takes to persist. Mentorship is a large part of that,” said Dr. Richard Rhodes, ACC president and CEO. “Suanne not only supported students financially through scholarships, she connected with each recipient. She offered personal mentor-ship and contact because that makes a difference.”
Roueche passed away in December 2017. With her husband, Dr. John Roueche, she established the Dr. Suanne Davis Roueche Scholarship for Veterinary Technician students, an annual scholarship awarded to ten students in ACC’s Veterinary Technology program. The couple also established an endowment with the ACC Foundation in 2011, which now stands at almost $600,000.
“The foundation has given me a warm welcome and allowed me to use their resources in order to reach my goals,” said Brenda Mendez, Veterinary Technology student and scholarship recipient. “I want to have their compassion and their knowledge to share with my future work environment, be a great team player and provide satisfactory service to my clients.”
Roueche also was President and Scholarship Chair of the Assistance League of Austin, which has contributed more than $1,200,000 to the ACC Foundation. Nationally, she served as a mentor and professor at the Community College Leadership Program at the University of Texas at Austin.
“Not only is Suanne remembered for her devotion to community colleges in Texas and across America, but she is remembered for her respect for students and support to provide them a better future,” said Barbara Mink, ACC Board of Trustees.
“I was concerned that maybe our scholarships weren’t enough to help people get through,” Suanne once said. “I’ve always been surprised at what kind of a difference it makes. What you invest in them comes back. They stay in school. They graduate. They find success.”
The Dr. Suanne Davis Roueche Lobby at Elgin Campus honors the graceful guidance, unwavering support and authentic belief she extended to every student she met.