Jan and Helen Novotny shared a passion for education, a strong belief in assisting future students and an admiration for Fanshawe College’s ability to help students reach their potential. Jan and Helen believed that if you live in London, “your path always crosses with Fanshawe College in one way or another.”
Jan joined Fanshawe in 1987 as the chair of Continuing Education, a position he held until his retirement in 2005. Over those 18 years, Jan had set a positive example for everyone at Fanshawe from students to staff, from faculty to alumni and retirees to follow. He most enjoyed interacting with students and being exposed to a variety of cultures. Helen developed her love of Fanshawe from a student’s perspective, as she enrolled in several art courses over a six-year period.
For Jan and Helen, it was important to leave something behind. “We want to inspire others to think about how they can make an impact on the future of our community and our country,” Jan said when the planned gift was announced in 2007. In 2016, Fanshawe presented the first 10 Novotny Scholarships, which pays the first-year tuition for eligible Fanshawe students enrolled in a technology-based program. Catherine Finlayson, former executive director of the Fanshawe College Foundation says the Novotny’s support will help students and the community prosper and grow. “We’re deeply moved to receive such a generous gift that clearly reflects their belief in Fanshawe and the importance of post-secondary education,” she says. “Jan and Helen’s passion for education lives on providing new opportunities for students in the Faculty of Technology.”
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