22:01 PM

DMC “Elves” Pull Together to Make 150 Salvation Army Angels’ Christmas Brighter

Valdar the Viking, along with Diagnostic Medical Sonography and Echocardiography students, help load into delivery truck donated gifts collected as part of Adopt-an-Angel Program

Article by Melinda Eddleman


On the morning of Dec. 12, colorfully-packaged gifts placed under the Christmas tree located in the Del Mar College (DMC) Purchasing and Business Services Department’s lobby awaited pick-up by the Salvation Army of the Coastal Bend to deliver to children dreaming of Santa’s arrival. The collection of gifts––including toys, bikes, clothes and other items––were donated by 103 DMC “elves” supporting 150 children who submitted their wish lists as part of the local Adopt-an-Angel Program.

For many families in need this time of year, the magic of Santa wouldn’t occur without organizations like the Salvation Army and those who volunteer or donate gifts to make the holiday wishes of Coastal Bend children possible.

Every year, the Del Mar College family demonstrates their willingness to participate with the Adopt-an-Angel Program and provides generously to the Coastal Bend families in need of these gifts,. I’m always amazed at how many DMC ‘elves’ respond when that first email goes out asking for supporters to assist the Salvation Army with meeting their mission and goals for the annual drive.

Irma Maldonado, Duplicating Operator with the DMC Print Services Office
DMC Print Services Elves and Mascot_Elizabeth Herrera_Irma Maldonado_Valdar the Viking_Clara Garcia_VN

The College began participating in the annual Adopt-an-Angel drive in the 1990s and has been organized through the Print Services Office with DMC’s Purchasing and Business Services Department. Maldonado has served in the key role of that effort.

During the gift pick-up, Major Nathaneal Doria, Commander of the Salvation Army of the Coastal Bend, noted that the College was the largest organization to participate this year. “We had over 1,000 children submit lists to the Adopt-an-Angel Program for 2023, and Del Mar College makes up well more than 10 percent and the largest number of the gifts donated by a single group this year,” he said.

One group of students with the  Diagnostic Medical Sonography and Echocardiography Programs were among the College’s elves and pulled together to support the Adopt-an-Angel Program as their community service project. A combined 25 students from these two programs and two faculty members, including Associate Professor of Diagnostic Medical Sonography and Program Director Christin Vega and Instructor of Echocardiography and Program Director Amy Alvarez, sponsored gifts to make Christmas for 14 children merrier this year.

And, this year’s collaborative effort between the two programs is not the first time they’ve participated with the Adopt-an-Angel Program.

“I organize participation among our students in both programs every year,” says Vega. “Two students are paired per child, and they collaborate on getting the gifts.”

Vega, Alvarez and some of their students even dressed in their scrubs and helped Valdar the Viking and DMC staff load the Salvation Army’s truck during the gift pick-up.

Of Del Mar College’s annual participation with the Salvation Army’s program, Maldonado said, “Children with the Adopt-an-Angel Program may not receive any gifts other than what the Salvation Army provides, so I feel blessed to participate with the program and to see how our campus community pulls together to help others. The personal reward from such an effort is incredible!”

About Del Mar College

Del Mar College empowers students to achieve their dreams. We offer quality programs, individual attention, outstanding instruction through faculty with real-world experience and affordable costs to credit and noncredit students in Corpus Christi and the South Texas Coastal Bend area. Nationally recognized while locally focused, we’re ranked in the top two percent of community colleges in the country granting associate degrees to Hispanic students (Community College Week). Del Mar College focuses on offering our students programs that match current or emerging career opportunities. Whether students are interested in the fine arts, sciences, business, occupational or technical areas, students get the education they need for the future they want at Del Mar College.