With the Pasadena City College (PCC) Foundation raising $600,00 annually for scholarships, they have successfully raised more than $950,000 this year in net proceeds for scholarships awarded to PCC students through its first scholarship fundraiser, “PCC Celebrates Student Success.”
“This is the first community fundraising event the Foundation has held for the purpose of raising funds specifically for scholarships,” said Bobbi Abram, executive director of the PCC Foundation, in an email. “This event has raised enough funds for over 100 annual scholarships to be awarded in 2016; and another 100 to be awarded each year in perpetuity.”
The largest donations came from the Wendy Munger and Leo Gumport Endowment, Dorvin and Betty Leis Charities, Inc., and KPCC. All have had a long-standing relationship with PCC but the most substantial donation came from Dorvin and Betty Leis.
“The scholarship funds we are raising will help make a college education possible for the nearly 70 percent of PCC’s 25,000 students who need financial aid,” said John Gregory, president of the PCC Foundation board of directors, in an email.
During the last State of the Union address, President Obama proposed the “America’s College Promise” plan that would provide free tuition for community college students. The PCC Foundation fully supports the proposal.
“‘America’s College Promise’ will prompt students, who may never have dreamed it was possible, to attend college,” Gregory said. “The Pasadena City College Foundation has been raising funds for scholarships for 35 years, and that will remain our top priority. The continuing support of our donors will be even more important now because the President’s plan will encourage more students to pursue a college education. Donors will be needed to bridge the gap between the students’ ability to pay and the full cost of attendance.”
Donors of $5,000 or more have the opportunity to start and name their own fund, and donations of less than $5,000 will go to support the Student Success Scholarship Fund.
“This milestone means that PCC students will have more opportunities to apply for and receive scholarships than ever before in our history,” Abram said. “Going forward, this means that the Foundation will have a stronger scholarship program than ever before, the Foundation will have more visibility in the community and has become a top-of-mind non-profit organization that community philanthropists will continue to support with their donations.”
With this event, there have been two kinds of scholarships that have been created: Annual Scholarships, a one-time scholarship that is given each year; and Endowed Scholarships, a scholarship fund that is created where the funds will be held in an investment account and only the interest on the account will be awarded, allowing a scholarship to be given each year in perpetuity.
The event will take place on Saturday, May 16 on campus with a variety of student entertainment along with a display of Pasadena’s first 3D projection mapping.
Once known as the Student Fund Association, the PCC Foundation provides student scholarships and faculty grant funding in support of PCC. It is composed of 33 directors, 10 advisors, an executive director and staff, all of whom are responsible for fundraising.