Johnny Rodgers Career and Technical Education Scholarships at Metropolitan Community College Foundation assist low- income and first generation students entering the career and technical trades programs at Metropolitan Community College.
Metropolitan Community College academic programs offer a wide range of career options within the skilled trades to prepare students for entry-level employment and advancement opportunities as technical professionals in a wide variety of industries. Training options range from a single course to a two-year associate degree, as well as apprenticeship training programs.
Metropolitan Community College, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association, is a comprehensive, public community college that offers affordable and quality education to all residents of Dodge, Douglas, Sarpy and Washington counties. Founded in 1974, Metropolitan Community College has the largest enrollment out of six community colleges in Nebraska and is the second largest post secondary institution in the state. Metropolitan Community College serves more than 50,000 students annually.
In the past eight years, the Jet Award Gala and Award Ceremony has grown substantially! It has evolved from an event that recognizes and celebrates the best college football return specialist to an event that also gives back to the community, thanks to your assistance and participation.
It is said that life has a way of duplicating itself and if you’re lucky you might hang around long enough to see it. Such is the case of two former Omaha Technical High School graduates who were raised in North Omaha and whose hearts have never left there. Johnny Rodgers and Kathy J. Trotter are lifelong classmates and forever friends. You can feel the kinship when they are around one another.
To date, over $100,000 has been raised from the proceeds of this event to support scholarships for students attending Metropolitan Community College. These students are primarily enrolled in the trades and career programs.
Currently, the results show that over 80 students are attending MCC as a Johnny Rodgers Scholarship recipient. The students are enrolled in Construction, Heath, IT, Automotive and others with an average GPA of 3.0.
The Johnny Rodgers Scholarship initiative is truly a “game changer” for these students. It will continue to move individuals from potentially a minimum wage job to an actual career with benefits. They will be given an opportunity to improve their quality of life and to contribute to our economy in a very meaningful way. The return on your investment will be significant in helping meet the workforce needs of the greater Omaha Metropolitan area.A quote by Tim“By empowering people through education, we create stronger individuals, families, neighborhoods and communities to live, work and play.”
Manager of Community Relations
Metropolitan Community College
Life and happenstance put them together during the late sixties at Tech High School. Now a thriving community college in Omaha, Nebraska has allowed life to duplicate itself, bringing these two genuine, caring people to the crest of a great crusade. Johnny Rodgers has come full circle in his life and so has Kathy J. Trotter. Now they are together again in an effort to open opportunities through trade initiatives fueled by Johnny’s celebrity and Kathy’s diligence.
For years he has kept ready in his mind the need to replace the educational trade gap left in the early 80’s when Omaha Technical High School was closed. However, for Kathy J. Trotter it has never mattered what venues closed, opened or who came in or left the educational world. She’s never been one to stand around waiting for things to happen. She’s always that leader who ventures out each day in an effort to make things happen. When she walks into a room you know she has arrived. If she serves on a committee you know she’s there. If there’s work to be done you know she’ll do it.
She was born Kathy Jeannette Trotter during the hottest days of the Omaha calendar. That fire she was born into has never left her. From birth she was brought to North Omaha and like a soldier standing guard she has never left. One summer at the tender age of 15 she served as a teacher’s aide in a contest that earned her $2.00 for being the best there. That single event sent her on an educational march… Technical High School graduate, University of Nebraska Bachelor’s Degree, University of Omaha Masters and back to Lincoln for her Specialist Degree and it continues to this day. Her life has been dedicated to promoting, serving and teaching our youth. She has served as educator, vice principal and principal of both public and private schools. Currently she is the coordinator of single parent homemaker services with Metropolitan Community College. She is loyal, dedicated and will run you over if you’re in the way of her helping students.
Even as this writing began she took the interview amidst a busload of fifty-three young African American students on their way to visit several historic black colleges and universities. A trip she has taken for the past thirty-five years, all in the name of helping students.
A proud parent of one child, she has a thousand kids that see her as a mother and she guides and cares for them as if she was. She has worked for, been a member of and has been recognized by countless groups and organizations, nearly all the time as a volunteer. Always giving, she now finds herself poised to reach even higher in her efforts to help students seeking to gain education through trade. For Kathy, through the Metropolitan Community College Foundation is a God sent opportunity both for those who give and receive.
The scholarships will set off a chain reaction that could eventually fund, in many cases, the entire college tuition of a student seeking careers in the technical trades at Metropolitan Community College. These scholarships will target students designated as graduates of Omaha Public Schools with funds generated by The Johnny “The Jet” Rodgers National College Football Return Specialist Award Gala.
On behalf of The Jet Award Team we are proud to be a part of such a wonderful and humane effort on the part of all involved. However, we feel even more proud and secure to know that Kathy J. Trotter is the chairperson that oversees this monumental and unprecedented undertaking.
Joe “747” Adams (born April 5, 1958) is a former Canadian football quarterback who played three seasons in the Canadian Football League with the Saskatchewan Roughriders, Toronto Argonauts and Ottawa Rough Riders during 1982 to 1984. He was drafted by the San Francisco 49ers in the twelfth round of the 1981 NFL Draft, but remained a practice squad member during his one year with the team. He played college football at Tennessee State University. Adams garnered the nickname “747” in reference to the Boeing 747 aircraft.
Ty Anthony Montgomery II (born January 22, 1993) is an American football wide receiver for the New England Patriots of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at Stanford. Montgomery was drafted as a wide receiver by the Green Bay Packers in the third round of the 2015 NFL Draft. In 2016, he changed positions to running back.
Tyler Deron Lockett (born September 28, 1992) is an American football wide receiver for the Seattle Seahawks of the National Football League (NFL). He was drafted by the Seahawks in the third round of the 2015 NFL Draft. He played college football at Kansas State. In college, he set numerous Kansas State football records and was both a 2011 All-American (as a kickoff returner) and 2014 College Football All-America Team consensus All-American selection (as a punt returner). In college, he totaled 6,586 career all-purpose yards and 35 touchdowns, including 3,710 yards and 29 touchdowns as a receiver.
Christian Jackson McCaffrey (born June 7, 1996), also known by his initials CMC, is an American football running back for the San Francisco 49ers of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at Stanford and was drafted by the Carolina Panthers eighth overall in the 2017 NFL Draft. As a sophomore in 2015, McCaffrey was named AP College Football Player of the Year and was a finalist for the Heisman Trophy. He holds the NCAA record for most all-purpose yards in a season, with 3,864. McCaffrey holds numerous NFL and Panthers franchise records and is one of three players ever to record 1,000 rushing and 1,000 receiving yards in the same season, doing so in 2019.
William Abb Cannon Sr. (August 2, 1937 – May 20, 2018) was an American football halfback, fullback and tight end who played professionally in the American Football League (AFL) and the National Football League (NFL). He attended Louisiana State University (LSU), where he played college football as a halfback, return specialist, and safety for the LSU Tigers. At LSU, Cannon was twice named a unanimous All-American, helped the 1958 LSU team win a national championship, and received the Heisman Trophy as the nation’s most outstanding college player in 1959. His punt return against Ole Miss on Halloween night in 1959 is considered by fans and sportswriters to be one of the most famous plays in LSU sports history.
Williams was born to Pam Veasey and Marvin Williams on July 15, 1998. He grew up in Pasadena, California and originally attended Saint Francis High School before transferring to JSerra Catholic High School before his senior year. As a senior, Williams was named Trinity League co-Most Valuable Player after rushing for 1,175 yards and 14 touchdowns on offense at running back and was also an All-Area selection at defensive back. He received no scholarship offers to play college football and enrolled at Boise State after being offered to join the team as a preferred walk-on.[
Richard Upchurch (born May 20, 1952) is an American former professional football player who was a wide receiver and return specialist in the National Football League (NFL). He played his entire career with the Denver Broncos from 1975 to 1983. One of 29 individuals to be selected to multiple All-Decade teams, Upchurch is noted as one of the greatest return specialists of all time.
William Arthur Johnson (born January 27, 1952), better known as Billy “White Shoes” Johnson, is an American former professional football player who was a wide receiver and return specialist in the National Football League (NFL) from 1974 through 1988. A 75th and 100th Anniversary All-Time NFL Team selection, Johnson was one of the first players to display elaborate celebrations in the end zone.
Damieon Dante Hall (born September 20, 1978) is a former American football wide receiver and return specialist who played nine seasons in the National Football League (NFL). He is nicknamed the “Human Joystick” and the “X-Factor“. Hall was a fifth-round draft pick out of Texas A&M University by the Kansas City Chiefs in the 2000 NFL Draft. Hall played for the Chiefs for seven years before being traded to the St. Louis Rams in 2007. Hall was ranked the 10th greatest return specialist in NFL history on NFL Network‘s NFL Top 10 Return Aces.
Clifford Branch Jr. (August 1, 1948 – August 3, 2019) was an American professional football wide receiver who played with the Oakland / Los Angeles Raiders during his entire 14-year National Football League (NFL) career. He won three NFL championships with the Raiders in Super Bowl XI, XV and XVIII. He was selected by the Raiders in the fourth round of the 1972 NFL Draft after playing college football for the Colorado Buffaloes. He was posthumously elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2022.
A two time All-American, Garrett set numerous NCAA, Pac-8 Conference and USC records in his career by amassing a then unheard of 3,221 yards and scored 30 touchdowns. Garrett also led the nation in rushing in 1965 with 267 carries for 1,440 yards. He also caught 36 passes, returned 43 punts, returned 30 kickoffs and threw 6 passes. Two of his passes went for touchdowns. Garrett was awarded the 1965 W. J. Voit Memorial Trophy as the outstanding football player on the Pacific Coast. He won the Heisman Trophy after the 1965 regular season. In 1985, he was voted into the College Football Hall of Fame.
Ginn played for his father, Ted Ginn Sr., in high school at Glenville High School in Cleveland, Ohio, where he played defensive back, quarterback, and wide receiver for the football team. Ginn was selected as the 2004 USA Today Defensive Player of the Year, a 2004 Parade All-American, and named the 2004 SuperPrep National Defensive Player of the Year. He also participated in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl as a member of the East team, along with former Dolphins teammates Ryan Baker and Chad Henne, and was named the Most Valuable Player of the game.
Aaron DaRon Lockett (born September 6, 1978) is a former American football and Canadian football wide receiver and return specialist in the National Football League (NFL) for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, San Francisco 49ers, and in the Canadian Football League (CFL) for the Ottawa Renegades and BC Lions. He played college football at Kansas State University where he set school and Big 12 Conference football and track and field records. His brother Kevin Lockett and nephew Tyler Lockett also played wide receiver at Kansas State where they also set records.
Davis grew up in St. Francisville, Louisiana and attended West Feliciana High School, where he helped lead the Saints to a 3A state championship as a senior in 2017 and also starred in track, winning the 200-meter dash at the state meet.
Rated as a 3-star prospect, Davis chose to play his college football at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, Texas over a scholarship offer from Tennessee. He enrolled at TCU in the summer of 2018.