The new multi-million dollar theatre at Temecula Valley High School was filled on Monday, May 12 as donors, recipients, dignitaries and family members gathered for the 27th Annual Community Scholarship Awards Ceremony hosted by Temecula “Dollars for Scholars.”
Mayor Maryann Edwards, Temecula Valley Unified School Board Superintendent Tim Ritter, and TVUSD Board member Dr. Pulsipher were in attendance to see the organization present 221 recipients with $162,000 in scholarships. Another 74 will be presented atschool awards ceremonies.
The organization – formerly known as Citizens Scholarship Foundation – has been awarding scholarships to local students for 27 years. Donors have traditionally been local businesses, charitable organizations, and private citizens.
“We have awarded over $3 million dollars in 27 years,” said Barbie Borgeson, president of Temecula Dollars for Scholars. “Thirty years ago, this was started by a group of Temecula moms. We now have 112 community donors. This is a small town with a generous spirit. This year we joined with Scholarship America for better recognition and branding. We adopted a new online-only application process and we have access to national scholarships as well as our local ones.”
Borgeson cited the help of her 20 board members and many volunteers who make this event successful each year.
“Over 500 students applied and 370 completed the process,” said Lynn Shaver, awards chairperson. Erin Simon, treasurer for Dollars for Scholars, estimated the total scholarships at $200,000 this year.
Donors included large organizations like Pechanga Development Corporation (PDC) who awarded 24 scholarships: eight $500 scholarships to each of the three high schools.
PDC Director Randy Bardwell was one of the first graduates of Temecula Valley High School (1987-88) and remarked how fortunate the students were to have such great facilities compared to his day, “We had to play our home football games at Elsinore High.”
Over the years, PDC has awarded $3,715,000 in scholarships and grants to nine high schools in Elsinore, Murrieta and Temecula.
Abbot Vascular Awards presented ten scholarships.
The Roripaugh Family Foundation was also established many years ago by the second-generation rancher/farmer who owned much of what is now Temecula. Their three $2,000 scholarships are annually renewable for four years.
Charitable and service organizations – Assistance League, Rotary, Kiwanis, Boys and Girls Clubs – awarded scholarships. The Assistance League has awarded over $203,000 in scholarships since 2003. Southwest Riverside County Association of Realtors® provides $14,000 in scholarships each year; they awarded six scholarships. The Temecula Valley Women’s Club – whose Holiday Home Tour is their major fundraiser – awarded 20 scholarships of $1,000 each.
Families and individuals also presented scholarships as giving memorials to loved ones.
Middle schools, elementary schools, PTA’s, and even individual teachers presented scholarships to their students. The reunions of former third and fourth grade students with their teachers and administrators was touching and inspiring.
There were a number of new donors this year, including the Temecula Historical Museum. Two former scholarship recipients – Mike Spencer and Parker Jasper – presented their first MSPJ Engineering Scholarship.