ALUMNI GIVE BACK IN 2013, STRIVE IN 2014 FOR BIGGER GOALS
Golf, Ill. – In 2013, Evans Scholars Alumni contributed a record $4.8 million to the WGA Par Club campaign, paying it back to the organization that sent them to college on a full tuition and housing Evans Scholarship.
The efforts included the support of 29 Alumni who contributed as Match Play Challenge partners, making gifts of at least $50,000 to create a pool of funds that would match all major gifts of $2,500 or more. Total Alumni and Scholar giving in 2013 across all avenues was $7.1 million, and total lifetime Alumni contributions is now nearly $70 million.
Due to the strong support from both Alumni and other Par Club members, the Evans Scholars Foundation is poised to award more tuition and housing scholarships than in recent years and expand the Program’s reach in 2014.
Forty percent of Evans Scholars Alumni made a gift of at least $250 to the 2013 Par Club campaign, an increase of 2 percent in participation over the prior year. Alumni from the University of Illinois and Indiana University chapters both had a 49 percent participation rate, leading all Alumni chapters.
At a time when college tuitions continue to rise and the Foundation is receiving a record number of scholarship applications, WGA leaders are planning how to best grow the program. In 2013, the WGA Board of Governors approved a goal of sending 1,000 caddies to college. Program leaders are already working to build and renovate Scholarship Houses, form partnerships with new universities and continue developing the caddie pipeline.
The Evans Scholars Alumni Association has set an intermediate goal to achieve 50 percent Alumni participation in the Par Club by 2016. An ongoing focus is on efforts to further engage Alumni through networking, special events, Scholar relations and caddie recruitment. Currently, Alumni can connect through both a university network, as well as regionally.
“In the last few years, we’ve had great success in developing an Alumni Association structure that can continue to flourish,” says Alumni Association national chair Joel Bergstrom. “We look forward to the support of all Alumni to help take the Evans Scholars Foundation to new heights in the future. We know firsthand how our lives have been changed through this Scholarship, and now it’s our turn to pay it forward to deserving caddies who are in need of a shot at opportunity.”
Bill Kingore, WGA Senior VP, Development and Strategy, will work closely with the Alumni Association leadership in efforts to achieve their goals in 2014 and beyond. “The need is clearly greater than ever, and we want to ensure that no deserving caddie is left behind,” he said. “It is vital that each of our Evans Scholars take an active part in this effort.”
To make a gift to the 2014 Par Club campaign, visit wgaesf.org. WGA leaders will monitor the success of the 2014 campaign, sharing updates with Alumni throughout the year. For more information, contact Amy Lillibridge, Director of Annual Giving & Alumni Relations, at 847-724-4600.
For more information about the Alumni Association, visit wgaesf.org.