ORLANDO, FL. — Florida Technical College (FTC) has named Osceola Council on Aging (OCOA), the largest social services organization in Osceola County, as its 2021 Hospitality Partner of the Year.

Florida Technical College (FTC) Distinguished Partnership Awards honors and recognizes a leader or an organization that works to strengthen the pathway between college coursework and career success, demonstrates strong commitment to providing work-integrated learning opportunities, and hiring of FTC students, and/or have shown a high level of overall support of FTC’s mission.

Osceola Council on Aging has become a critical and important partner for FTC,” stated Dr. James Michael Burkett, President of FTC. “Thanks to the great partnership we have with the organization, it has led to remarkable programs designed to empower and further the development of our students. Not only it is great way for students to give back to our community but it’s also an opportunity that allows students to put their skills to practice and build experience”.

“We’re so excited and proud to be named as FTC Hospitality Partner of the Year,” stated Wendy Ford, President and CEO of Osceola Council on Aging. “As we celebrate our 50th anniversary, this award serves as continued validation of our relationship-driven approach to service. Our partnership with FTC strengthens our impact on our community, and equip our organization to fulfill our mission of serving seniors, disabled adults, and disadvantaged families in Osceola County.”

Ms. Ford accepted the award on behalf of the Osceola Council on Aging at the organization’s headquarters on February 2, 2022. The non-profit provides help to seniors and families in need through programs like Meals on Wheels, housing and utility assistance, home weatherization and accessibility, home care and adult day health care and transportation.

“There is still so much to do. Our work isn’t done just yet,” added Ms. Ford. “We’ll continue to develop new opportunities to further deepen our relationship with FTC to support its students and meet the needs of our communities.”

Award winners are selected based on initiative, leadership, and the significant and positive impact they have on the lives of FTC students and the community at large.

Osceola Council on Aging was one of seven honorees selected from a Faculty & Staff Advisory Council with backgrounds in key business industries, such as construction, technology, healthcare, nonprofits, education, and hospitality–from throughout Florida.

About Osceola Council on Aging: Created in 1971, the Osceola Council on Aging, Inc. is the largest social services organization in Osceola County, providing a wide array of services and programs to meet the needs of our community. Though the name implies services for just the elderly, our scope of services extends to families as well, helping during crisis to enable generations of residents to cope with challenges. The Osceola Council on Aging, Inc. is a 501 (c) 3, non-profit, private charitable organization dedicated to providing services to enable independence and self-sufficiency for seniors, disabled adults, the disadvantaged and families in poverty.

About FTC: Founded in 1982 to provide private, post-secondary education in specialized fields, NUC University – Florida Technical College is an academic unit of NUC University (NUC), which is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE), 3624 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104. (267-284-5000) www.msche.org. The MSCHE is an institutional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). NUC – FTC offers diploma, associate and bachelor’s degree programs in a range of professions, including Healthcare, Construction Trades, Hospitality, Beauty, Information Technology and Business. NUC – FTC campuses are located in Orlando, Kissimmee, Lakeland, DeLand, Pembroke Pines, Cutler Bay and Tampa. Program availability varies by campus.