ACTC partnering with local businesses to provide 62 Thanksgiving meals to students 

Published 2:44 pm Tuesday, November 24, 2020

ASHLAND, KENTUCKY — Due to the generosity of a local business and a student at Ashland Community and Technical College, the families of 62 ACTC students will have a ham on their table this Thanksgiving.

Chrisha Spears, coordinator of Pathfinder Pantry, worked with Smithfield Foods, Inc. to receive a donation of 50 hams for ACTC students. Electrical Technology student, Christopher Bradley, also donated 12 hams to the holiday dinner project.

Bradley was a GED+ student in fall 2019/spring 2020 who worked on his GED while concurrently enrolled in ACTC’s electrical program. He quickly finished his GED and enrolled full time in the electrical program.

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Bradley is a full-time employee at Smithfield and wanted to give back to the GED+ program and to ACTC.

“Unfortunately, a lot of folks take for granted the small things that matter. I used to be one of those people. I have been at rock bottom, and I have been pretty close to what I consider “the top”. My dad said something to me a long time ago that I didn’t really pay attention to when he said it. But he said, “if you got, give it, and it’ll make you feel good” Again when he said it, it didn’t sink in. He’s gone now, but I get it now that I’m older. And it does…it makes you feel great to give to those in need. And not just the little bit of happiness buying something nice brings you. It’s the true kind of joy that warms your heart and sticks to your soul! I donate what I can when I can to honor what my dad said, but also, I do it to show my children how to give. I hope the little bits that I’m able to give is enough to brighten someone’s day, even if it is short lived,” Bradley said.

Spears also used the money the Pathfinder Pantry received in CARES Act funding to partner with Food Fair. She was able to purchase side items to go with the hams so recipients would have a full Thanksgiving dinner.

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act or, CARES Act, was passed by Congress and signed by President Donald Trump on March 27. This bill allotted $2.2 trillion to provide fast and direct economic aid to the American people negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Various departments at ACTC, such as the Pantry, received additional funding as a part of the CARES Act.

“We love collaborating each year with local churches and organizations to help support families in our community during the holidays,” said Bob Bailey, Store Manager at Food Fair.

The Pathfinder Pantry is committed to transforming the lives of ACTC students through assistance with meeting basic needs and accessing campus and community resources. The Pathfinder Pantry aims to remove non-academic barriers to college success and contributes to educational attainment for all students.

For more information about Pathfinder Pantry, visit or email