November 2017 Student of the Month
Michael Clamp is our November 2017 Student of the Month. Michael is an Atwater native, attending Atwater schools all the way through his graduation from Atwater High. He attended two vocational schools in the airline industry and spent 20 years in customer service in the field.
After encountering a serious health issue, Michael decided to return to school in 2015 with the intention of acquiring an A.A. in Social & Behavioral Science and International Studies. He works hard to maintain his 4.0 GPA and Dr. Molina says she is impressed with how hard he works and how dedicated he is to both his family and his studies. Michael changed majors and will graduate with an AAT and transfer to one of our California State Universities to study Geography and either Meteorology or Earth Sciences. He is excited to be able to put his degrees to good use working overseas helping to create better lives for those who are less fortunate than he is.
Michael said that going to Merced College was an experiment and, according to Dr. Molina, it is a successful experiment! Dr. Molina states “He is a motivator for other students to believe in the impossible and to never give up on their dreams even when unexpected catastrophic events happen.”
He was able to return to school with the help of his father, Richard Clamp. Professor Clamp taught Math at Merced College for 17 years. In his father’s honor, he established and maintains the Richard Clamp Memorial Fund that sponsors scholarships for students who are enrolled in the EOP&S and DSPS programs. Michael formed a DSPS peer support group and his GPA was recognized by EOP&S in the both the Spring of 2016 and 2017. Among other activities, Michael mentors peers and fundraises for the Richard Clamp Memorial Fund. His travel to his wife’s native country, The Philippines, sparked his interest in book collecting for underprivileged schools and stems from his appreciation of the many books and services available at the Merced College Library. He would “like to continue sharing this appreciation and knowledge of books and technology with other students in underserved countries (Dr. Molina).”