First a Charlotte Latin Family, the Cockrells now Consider Providence Day Home

They were a Latin family following a move to Charlotte from Detroit. Kieth and Serena Cockrell watched son Ross excel at, and graduate from, Charlotte Latin. Their two daughters, Ciera and Anna, had a different idea.

“The girls made the decision,” Serena explained. “I came kicking and screaming to this school.”

What a difference a few years make.

“This has become our home,” said Kieth. “It is a special place.”

Seeing Ciera and Anna develop into young leaders has been particularly rewarding, given their very different personalities and styles. Their parents attribute this to the powerful connection found at Providence Day between teachers, students and families; the personal sacrifices of coaches well beyond the practice field; and the different perspectives inherent in a diverse campus environment.

“The whole package has been phenomenal,” said Serena. “We’re proud that both our girls have flourished here. They’ve been challenged intellectually by their teachers to grow more, to be more, to think critically. It’s a testament to the school.”

While the Cockrell girls may have insisted on attending PD, their parents are now vocal and visible supporters of the school as well.

Kieth and Serena both served as members of the Board of Advisors, participating in the Accreditation, Digital Citizenship, and Multicultural committees.

The entire family has supported Freedom School during the past three summers, underscoring their belief in creating opportunities for students regardless of economic status. And they will leave a legacy with their early gift to the CHARGING forward campaign.

“Even though we’re about to leave, we made a commitment,” said Kieth.  Their initial investment seemed insufficient in their minds, however, as they reflected on the Providence Day experience following a senior parent event that proved both inspirational and motivational.   

“We convinced ourselves to give more,” said Serena.  “When you look around at what’s happening to our kids…the story is so compelling.”

“We believe in the [Providence Day] story,” added Kieth.  “We believe in opportunities for alumni engagement. We want to continue to diversify faculty and staff as well as the student body. We expect growth in volunteerism and giving back. We want to expand Freedom School, global studies, theater and the arts. The community deserves it.”

“You should always leave a place better than you found it,” concluded Serena.

The Cockrells’ thoughtful and generous commitment of $62,000 to the comprehensive campaign will enhance the Providence Day experience for generations to come. Serena proudly added that son Ross is following in his parents’ philanthropic footsteps and supported Providence Day’s 2015 Freedom School with a gift of backpacks for each of the PDS scholars.

Kieth and Serena are proud parents of Ross, Ciera ’15 and Anna ’16.