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Release Date: 
Tuesday, October 16, 2012

HFCC students win Grainger Tools for Tomorrow Scholarship

Zachary Rathwell and James Reinhard
Zachary Rathwell and James Reinhard

HFCC students Zachary Rathwell and James Reinhard recently won the Grainger Tools for Tomorrow Scholarship.

Rathwell and Reinhard won $2,000 in scholarship money for the 2012-13 academic year. Additionally, Grainger awarded them a customized Westward toolkit, which contains approximately $1,000 worth of tools geared specifically for their area of expertise.

“This scholarship has provided me a lot of buffer room and helped me pay for books, and the tools will be a lifelong investment,” said Rathwell, of Dearborn.

A 2009 alumnus of Dearborn High School, Rathwell graduated from HFCC earlier this year with his associate’s degree in Architecture/Construction Technologies (ACT). He has transferred to the University of Detroit Mercy, where he will pursue an undergraduate degree in Architecture. He also hopes to earn his graduate degree in Architecture from U-D Mercy.

Reinhard, a 1992 alumnus of Kennedy High School in Taylor, will graduate in 2013 with his associate’s degree in ACT. A veteran of the restaurant industry for 22 years, he currently works at Preston Construction in Canton.

“I’ve always been interested in construction ever since I was a little kid. When I was eight, I built a house for my cat, Tiger. I even carpeted the place. I modeled the outside after Tigers Stadium,” said Reinhard.

Upon graduation, Reinhard will continue working for Preston Construction. He does plan to continue his education. His biggest aspiration is to own his own construction business.

Dr. Gail Mee, president of HFCC, said that the College’s partnership with Grainger “has been invaluable for students, offering them significant financial support. Grainger has been very generous in this partnership and we are extremely appreciative of their commitment to students.”

HFCC was one of the first seven participating community colleges in the Grainger Tools for Tomorrow program. Grainger previously donated a trailer to HFCC, which allows the ACT department to transport tools to off-site locations and engage in construction projects.

According to Chad Richert, HFCC’s lead for the Construction Technology program, the trailer has proven to be an important resource for student learning and hands-on application of concepts outside the classroom.
“We use it annually for our community construction applications class, and hope to find ourselves in a position to do more work in the community,” he said.

Since 2006, Grainger and the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) have worked together to provide more students access to skilled trades jobs and technical education. Grainger has contributed more than $1.5 million in support of technical education in the form of scholarships, toolkits, technical education program support and awareness.

For more information about this scholarship program, please contact the HFCC Foundation at 313.845.9620, or visit