The Gifts of Time and Talent

Friday, March 8, 2019
Patricia Tate

One of the most impactful gifts alumni can offer their alma mater is their time and expertise.  Students must balance coursework, jobs, family obligations, and financial constraints while attending college. Add to that an uncertainty about their chosen profession and the need for a guiding hand is apparent.

The Alumni Mentor Connection

Alumni understand these struggles and can offer the priceless gift of mentorship. Alumni can help bridge the gap between classroom learning and the professional career students are preparing for. By offering students advice on courses to take, opportunities to seize, and obstacles to avoid, alumni provide students with critical real-life knowledge.

Once such incredible Phoenix College (PC) alumna is Patricia Tate ‘70. A recently retired and lauded Superintendent of the Osborn School District, Tate exemplifies the qualities most sought in a mentor – knowledge, heart, and a motivational mindset.

When it was time to connect a mentor with a promising scholarship student, Jennifer Sabori, a Deaf Studies major and PC Alumni Association Bear Scholar, there was no question about who would make the best alumni mentor.

A Sign of Success

Tate has a long and remarkable history with the deaf community in Arizona. As a child of deaf parents, Tate was fascinated when others would sign with her father. As an adult, Tate taught at the Phoenix Day School for the Deaf and the School for Deaf & Blind in Tucson while obtaining her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees.  After completing her education, Tate accepted a job at the Osborn School District in Phoenix, teaching for traditional and hearing-impaired children. During her time with Osborn, Tate rose to superintendent of schools and was part of a core group of instructors who launched the interpreter program at Phoenix College.

Tate strongly believes that women are obligated to reach out to other women and pull them along, helping them navigate barriers along the way. 

“My career in education and indeed my life have been enriched by the advice and honest feedback I have received from mentors. I cherish their friendship and truthfulness.” 

- Patricia Tate

A Perfect Match

When Sabori and Tate met, they clicked right away. Asked to describe their relationship in one word, they both signed “Friend.” Tate has become a treasured mentor to Sabori, giving her thoughtful advice on her chosen profession and context for her interpreting skills in the real world.

The formal mentor-mentee relationship is scheduled to continue until Sabori graduates from PC in 2018, but both feel confident they will stay connected far into the future.

If you are interested in creating a legacy through mentoring, contact Christy Flora at 602-285-7652, or via email at