Alcorn alumnus pays it forward by establishing endowment

A former agriculture major witnessed the “growth and progression” giving back has on colleges and universities and decided to make a sizable donation to students at his alma mater.  

Marc McCann ’94, North America operations lead for Cargill, Inc., recently established the Marc McCann and Family Agricultural Endowed Scholarship Fund at Alcorn State University. He began his long-term commitment to agriculture students with an initial $10,000 investment. 

“I am honored to begin this journey of establishing an endowed scholarship fund specifically for students majoring in agriculture at Alcorn,” said McCann. “The institution provided the foundation that launched my career in the private sector of agriculture.”  

“As we continue to celebrate an extraordinary 150 years of excellence, Alcorn has truly been a place where transformational dreams can come true,” said Dr. Felecia M. Nave, president of Alcorn State University. “Alcorn is more than an education, it is a life-changing experience. The investment by Mr. McCann in the future of our bright and eager students will help ensure opportunities are available for upcoming generations. I am deeply moved by the selfless love and generosity by Mr. McCann for Alcorn.”

“We are so grateful for esteemed donors and alumni like Mr. Marc McCann and his family for their generosity and commitment to making a lasting impact by daring to establish an endowment that pays it forward for future generations,” said Marcus Ward, vice president of Institutional Advancement.

“From the moment we had our first conversation about his Alcorn experience, I understood his strong passion, belief, and dedication to the possibilities an education from this great university provides. Marc is the epitome of an Alcornite because he knows that giving back is one of the easiest and most effective ways to leave a legacy while investing in the students, faculty, and staff of our dear old Alcorn.”

The Collins, Mississippi native manages eight ready-to-eat manufacturing facilities for Cargill and oversees 3,800 employees.  

McCann reflects on his time spent at Alcorn as favorable and giving him the tools to succeed in the private sector.  

“During my time at Alcorn, I think about the amount of work and preparation,” said McCann. “We had a lot of opportunities as it relates to a rigorous curriculum. I had the fortune of working in the private sector of agriculture and throughout my career, I've had progression in my career growth and other opportunities.” 

He remembers key Alcorn faculty members — Dr. Kenneth Stallings and Charles Tillman — as significant influences.  

McCann encourages other alumni to give back, noting it as one of the noblest things they can do for the institution.