The student news site of Pierce College in Lakewood, Washington.

Golf scramble puts money in students’ pockets

Annual fundraiser raised $46,000 in August

September 19, 2017

Every year the Pierce College Foundation hands out thousands of dollars in scholarships. Recipients are not just Science, Technology, Engineering and Math students or enrolled in the criminal justice program. They are veterans, military dependents, homeless — the list is endless.

One of the major fundraisers for these scholarships is the annual golf scramble. The 24th scramble was held Aug. 10 at the High Cedars Golf Club in Orting.

The foundation traditionally has been the beneficiary of some generous donors who use the scramble and the auction at the dinner banquet afterwards as a way to contribute to the fund.

Nicole Ferris from the foundation was one of the volunteers who coordinated the event. Due to a very successful fundraising event earlier this year, the foundation is making some changes to how the money raised is distributed.

“What we want to do is meet the greatest need of the student. Scholarships traditionally have been tuition-based, but we are expanding so it is more about the cost of attendance and everything that rolls up into that,” Ferris said.

Volunteers also contributed to the success of the event. Staff and students fill various key positions, from handling raffle drawings to directing traffic. For the donors, it is a way for them to put faces to the names they helped.

“We rely so much on our volunteers to make this happen. Our donors really live to interact with our students. They are the ones who benefit from the donor’s generosity,” Ferris said.

Pierce College Chancellor Michelle Johnson is enthusiastic on how the event benefits the students.

“Our students are here, showing the golfers how they have been committed to helping be part of this. That is the key part, showing how it helps students. We have always had a student speaker who talks about the impact,” she said.

John Gibson, owner of Cool Cycles Ice Cream Co., had a prime location in the middle of the course. He is a Pierce alum and received a scholarship during his term there.

“When I first went to Pierce College, I had no confidence at all. All I wanted to be was a businessman. Now I build a million-dollar apartment building and have 5 different companies. It all started at Pierce College,” Gibson said.

At the end of the day, the event raised about $46,000. It is money waiting in a scholarship or grant, ready to be put to use.

“I would encourage every student to apply for a scholarship. You’ll see something around October. That is when we do our next review,” Ferris said.

Information for applying is available at

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