Midwestern University and community leaders joined together on Saturday, October 20 to recognize and honor individuals for their commitment to helping others at the annual Bright Lights, Shining Stars gala.
Glendale resident and beloved Valley of the Sun broadcasting icon Al McCoy received the 2012 COMET (Community Outreach: Motivating Excellence for Tomorrow) Award, which was established by Midwestern University and the City of Glendale in 1999 to recognize outstanding individuals who have shown exemplary commitment to the community. The COMET Award was presented by Kathleen H. Goeppinger, Ph.D., President and CEO of Midwestern University, and the Honorable Mayor Elaine M. Scruggs, City of Glendale.
In addition to the COMET Award, Dr. Goeppinger presented the 2012 Shooting Star Award, which recognizes a community leader for outstanding contributions to healthcare and education, to UMOM New Day Centers, the largest homeless shelter for families in Arizona.
Five Spirit of Service scholarships were awarded at the gala to students representing three Midwestern University colleges for the 2012-2013 academic year. Scholarship recipients include: Erika Anderson from the Arizona College of Optometry (AZCOPT); Gina Buiocchi and Burrell Richards from the College of Pharmacy-Glendale (CPG); and Evelyn Height and Daniel Wright from the Arizona School of Podiatric Medicine (AZPod/CHS-AZ). The Spirit of Service scholarship program recognizes outstanding Midwestern University students based on community service, leadership abilities, academic standing, and financial need.
The black-tie-optional event, which raises over $100,000 annually in scholarship funds for students in all of Midwestern University's colleges, also featured an outdoor reception, formal dinner, live entertainment, and a silent auction.