Why Give: Donor Stories

The foundation works with individuals and businesses to help them achieve their charitable goals. CGCC and the foundation are thankful to each and every one of the donors that supports the efforts of the college. They are making a tremendous impact on our community and our students.

Interested in making a contribution to the foundation?

Learn how to give.

photograph of Bill and Darlene Marick

Donor Story

Bill and Darlene Marick

A good education and technical/career training gives people a greater chance of success in life.

Education has always been a top priority in our family. Bill's mother graduated from college and became a teacher. My father earned a B. A. in business administration on the G.I. Bill. Our parents encouraged us to graduate from college. Two of our sons attended community colleges before transferring to universities. Eventually, all three sons earned bachelors' degrees and two now have master's degrees.

A good education and technical/career training gives people a greater chance of success in life. This is why we have supported CGCC Foundation for 20 years. The foundation is committed to helping students by offering scholarships to those who are unable to afford a college education. Scholarships motivate students to complete their education. We decided to donate to the CGCC Foundation endowment fund because we know education is a wise investment that benefits individuals and their families and, in a broader sense, improves the quality of life in our community.

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photograph of Dr. Ernest and Gloria Keller

Donor Story

Dr. Ernest and Gloria Keller

Now, as I look forward, my reasons to contribute to the foundation are mostly because educated citizens, and people prepared to contribute to the community, make great neighbors and support the greater societal good that we all enjoy.

Why I donate to the foundation is a great question, and for me there are many reasons.

Giving was always an understood family value. I am Swiss, and it is the Swiss that started the International Red Cross, an institution associated with a great tradition of giving, helping, and caring. My father always told me that in Switzerland, even the poor people wanted to give when asked to help those in need.

Even though my parents were not college prepared, they were both very successful in their careers, and had a strong work ethic. They always voted for schools. I was the youngest of three children, and I can never remember having been asked if I had done my homework. It was expected that I be self-propelled. I was also expected to do my share of the household chores and earn my own spending money, through lawn work and a paper route. So when I considered buying something, I asked myself how long and hard would I have to work for it, and was it worth it.

I was a Boy Scout, and made life long friends in the troop. We progressed through the ranks and established a life long habit of doing our best. We were always taught to leave every situation better than we found it.

When I went to college in the early sixties, it was competitive and hard work, but it was also very affordable. I was fortunate to be able to work at building construction in the Seattle area and I even worked on the college science building that I later took physics and biology in. I worked in Alaska twice, and also on the Space Needle prior to going into the Army. I saved my money, lived off campus, and did my own cooking—no dorm food or fraternity expenses. Those were easier times to pay for a college education.
All of this happened because many people helped me along the way to pursue my college teaching degree. Many of these people I knew and thanked, but most were ordinary people paying their taxes, voting for legislatures that supported colleges, and folks contributing to college building funds and scholarship drives. Now, as I look forward, my reasons to contribute to the foundation are mostly because educated citizens, and people prepared to contribute to the community, make great neighbors and support the greater societal good that we all enjoy.

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photograph of Michelle Cochran

Donor Story

Michelle Cochran

I want to help give other students the same opportunity I had as a scholarship recipient. (Michelle Cochran, left in photo)

Many students face barriers to completing their college education. These barriers come in many forms but most are financial. CGCC Foundation scholarships give students an opportunity to reduce the stress that comes with financing their college education. I give to the foundation each month because I want to help give other students the same opportunity I had as a scholarship recipient. Every person deserves to pursue a college education. We must remember how important it is to not only provide access but to encourage and promote completion. When you contribute to the foundation, you are helping a student move one step closer to completing their degree and achieving their dream. As an employee at Columbia Gorge Community College, I hear students talk about their goals and dreams every day. I can’t help but think that as donors we are a part of making those dreams as reality.

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photograph of Charlie and Martha Capovilla

Donor Story

Charlie and Martha Capovilla

We believe strongly that all people should have access to continued education.

Our interest and involvement at Columbia Gorge Community College comes from our experiences in public education. We believe strongly that all people, should have access to continued education whenever life changes and/or goals require further education. Community colleges provide that access, and they often provide the first step for many people to higher education. Our family chooses to support CGCC Foundation and its efforts to award scholarships as students reach for their dreams.

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photograph of Dave and Ruby Mason

Donor Story

Dave and Ruby Mason

"We applaud the Foundation's assistance to students in the form of scholarships."

Ruby and I have been active CGCC Foundation supporters since 2004, volunteering for various efforts and with contributing financially. I have seen many students struggle financially as they pursue their individual mission of Building Dreams and Transforming lives, and we applaud the Foundation’s assistance to students in the form of scholarships.

Each spring CGCC offers a four week Humanities Series, bringing various artists, writers and other professionals to share their work with our communities. The Foundation has provided financial as well as volunteer hours support for this important work. Please join us in financial support to the CGCC Foundation.

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