PTC Foundation Director Exemplifies Goal of Technical College Mission

Fran Wiley, the Piedmont Technical College Foundation’s associate vice president for development, is a living, breathing example of the best that our technical college system produces. A PTC alumna from long ago, she built her skills patiently and strategically over time, accessing selected higher education programs that could help her ascend to the next desired level of her career ladder. 

“Before I even came to Piedmont Tech, I had a degree in dental assisting from Greenville Technical College,” she explained. “My pivotal moment was recognizing that I didn’t want to do dental assisting for the rest of my life. I needed to look at other pathways. PTC had a secretarial science program back then, and I thought it was a good choice because someone with secretarial skills could work in just about any industry.” 

Wiley remembers well her days as a PTC student working two jobs (in retail and waitressing) and attending classes at night. As busy as she was, she made time to actively participate in student government and to be inducted into the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society. She completed the secretarial science program and, after exploring a few different jobs, actually went to work at PTC, where she has spent the past 31 years working hard, advancing her education, and being promoted for her continuing, excellent performance in many roles at the college. 

While employed at PTC, Wiley earned her bachelor’s in business administration and her master’s in management from Southern Wesleyan University. Always focused on self-improvement, she also earned a certificate of graduate study in higher education leadership from the University of South Carolina. 



Wiley is a staunch advocate for college accessibility, because financial challenges keep too many bright people out of college. That’s why financial aid and scholarships are so critical.

“What really matters is continuing to help students succeed, not just insofar as outcomes but the learning, too,” she said. “In order to do that, we have to keep the access open. PTC is an open-access college, but not everyone has access because of funds.”

""Wiley seems to have endless reserves of energy, saying yes to involvement in every worthy organization that asks. She serves on the boards of Greenwood Christian School, the Emerald City Rotary Club, as former chair and past chair of the Laurens County Chamber of Commerce, as well as on the advisory board for Greenwood Vocational Rehabilitation. She currently attends New Covenant Church, where she has served in the past as a small group leader and still serves as a guest services volunteer.

Her allegiance to service, moral code, and compassionate nature make her an ideal leader for the Foundation. It’s a demanding job that requires making the hard asks for the good of the college and its students. The rewards of seeing the work of the Foundation grow, the number of scholarships proliferate, and empowered students ultimately succeed mean the world to Wiley. So what’s the favorite part of her job?

“I love working with donors and finding out what is important to them and connecting that with the students here,” she said. “When they see the difference they are making, it really means something. It also builds loyalty and legacy giving.” 

""Wiley marvels at how the Foundation’s annual Scholarship Luncheon has flourished over the years. The event brings together scholarship recipients with their donors to enjoy a meal together and share their experiences. It puts faces on the scholarships and affords students an opportunity to say thank you. 

Family is extremely important to Wiley. Her mother passed away when she was just 9 years old, and her father raised her and her siblings. 

“We really bonded,” she said. “There is not a week that goes by when I don’t hear from them. … We love to visit the mountains a couple of times a year. My siblings who used to live in other states moved back here for their retirement to be close by. We get together a lot.”

Wiley and her husband, Tim, have a son, Garrett (also now a PTC graduate in his own right), and the family lives on the lake in Ninety Six. When she needs to unwind and refuel after a busy week, Wiley enjoys cooking and reading while enjoying the verdant views of the lake from her home. 

If Wiley were to give advice to her younger self, she would definitely recommend staying in school, if at all possible.

“Don’t wait until you are 45 to get your bachelor’s or master’s. Stay in school and finish, because I did, and I had a small child at home on top of it,” she said. “And be kind to yourself. When I was growing up, I thought I needed to be perfect. Everything had to be in order. … It’s OK not to be perfect. You learn more by making mistakes. You grow from them, and that’s just natural.”


To learn more about the PTC Foundation, visit

During Women’s History Month, PTC is saluting a few of its own women of distinction.

•    Scene from the 2023 PTC Foundation Scholarship Luncheon.
•    Fran Wiley (second from left) is seen here in and a piece about a PTC Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society induction published in the The Laurens County Advertiser newspaper.
•    PTC President Dr. Hope E. Rivers honors Fran Wiley for 30 years of service 2023. 
•    Fran Wiley helps with hosting duties for the (umpteenth) PTC Golf Classic in 2023.