President and Chief Executive Officer of Rolls-Royce North America Honored at Vaughn College Gala

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Evening Showcases Student Success

Vaughn College President Dr. Sharon B. DeVivo introduces honoree Marion C. Blakey at the Vaughn College Gala on Thursday, November 10.

Vaughn College of Aeronautics and Technology honored the President and Chief Executive Officer of Rolls-Royce North America, Marion C. Blakey, for her role as a trailblazer and advocate for the aviation and transportation industries, and her dedicated support of Vaughn College at the annual event on Thursday, November 10.

The Gala’s theme this year was “Inspiring Students, Launching Careers,” highlighting successful students and alumni and Vaughn’s role in providing opportunities for students during college and beyond. Lou Young, long-time CBS broadcast journalist and eight-time Emmy Award winner served as the master of ceremonies.

Rolls-Royce donated four helicopter T-63 turbine engines to Vaughn for use in the College’s Aviation Training Institute, and the $260,000 raised in Gala proceeds will be used to fund scholarships and institutional priorities.

“Marion and Rolls-Royce have been so generous in their support of Vaughn College and have a strong commitment to aviation education, internships and career opportunity,” said Vaughn President Dr. Sharon B. DeVivo. “We are deeply appreciative of our relationship and shared vision and we are exited about the future of Vaughn and providing advancement opportunities for our students. With our small campus environment, unique networking, off-campus opportunities funded by Vaughn, affordable tuition and scholarships, and our successful internship program, we ensure that Vaughn students land great careers,” said DeVivo.

Vaughn College serves many first-generation Americans and first-generation college students and seeks to provide an engaging educational experience for every student. Ninety-eight percent of Vaughn graduates are employed or continue their education within one year of graduation.

“We are in an unprecedented era of opportunity in the world as companies increasingly look for new talent across the diversity spectrum and technological advances push the limits of the imagination,” said Blakey. “And I love the imagery of ‘Launching Careers;’ because we aren’t teaching our youth to aspire to mediocrity. No, we want to teach them to dream big and then have the courage to follow those dreams.”

VAUGHN COLLEGE: Founded in 1932, Vaughn College is a private, four-year college that enrolls more than 1,600 students in master’s, bachelor’s and associate degree programs in engineering, technology, management and aviation on its main campus in New York City and online. The student-faculty ratio of 14 to 1 ensures a highly personalized learning environment. Ninety-eight percent of Vaughn College graduates are placed in professional positions or choose to continue their education within one year of graduation. They work in 20 countries and all 50 states. The institution serves many first-generation college students and is recognized by the US Department of Education as a Hispanic-Serving Institution. For more information on Vaughn College, please visit

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John Bifone

Maureen Kiggins
Vaughn College of Aeronautics and Technology
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