HCC Southeast College President Irene Porcarello passes away

Feb 5, 2018


Houston Community College is mourning the death of Irene Porcarello, the president of HCC’s Southeast College.

Porcarello, who passed away Feb. 3, was a beloved educator and community activist. “She worked tirelessly to provide educational opportunities for thousands of students,” said HCC Chancellor Cesar Maldonado. “This is a loss that will be felt deeply by those who worked with her and admired her so much.”

In 2017, Porcarello was recognized with the Mayor’s Hispanic Heritage Award and had received numerous honors, including the 2016 YWCA Outstanding Leadership Award; the 2013 Fiestas Patrias Distinguished Hispanic of the Year Award; the Hispanic Woman of the Year by Sucesos Magazine in 2009; and a Profile of Prominence Award from the National Women of Achievement Organization in 2008.

Porcarello joined HCC 36 years ago and was named president of Southeast College in 2009. As president, Porcarello worked relentlessly building the Centers of Excellence in Logistics and Material Science. This included building partnerships between the college and public schools, community-based organizations, small businesses, East End Chamber, Houston Port Authority and community leaders. In 2017, Porcarello presided over the openings of the new Southeast College Workforce Building and Student Life Center.

Porcarello received a bachelor’s degree in English followed by a master’s degree in social work from the University of Houston. She earned a doctoral degree in counseling and education leadership from Sam Houston State University.

Funeral arrangements are pending.

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