From the Beginning
Residents thought their neighbor Charles Johnson had a good idea when he suggested that they establish a scholarship fund for Splendido at Rancho Vistoso employees and their children. Splendido is a continuing care retirement community in Oro Valley that employs many dedicated people. An ad hoc committee of the Residents Council did the preliminary footwork and a Scholarship Committee was appointed. They have provided scholarships for four years and in 2012 the first scholarship was made to a graduate student. Scholarships to date total $80,000, generously funded by residents. The seed money for this fund came from a memorial for Harry Schuler, an early Splendido resident.
Once qualified, scholarship recipients are supported for up to four years of study, as long as there is a financial need and they have good grades. Renewals are given priority. As word of the scholarship availability spreads among employees and their children, the applicant pool grows each year. Four scholarships were given the first year and 13 were awarded in the fourth year. Guidelines for Splendido Scholarship Applicants
The Philanthropic Plan
Providing scholarships is one of many ways residents reach out to enrich the lives of Splendido employees and others in the larger community. In the beginning, residents established a non-endowed scholarship fund at the Community Foundation for Southern Arizona because the Foundation makes it easy to administer the program. Beginning in 2011, residents added an endowed fund at the Foundation, which keeps spending at a percentage of the principal, thus ensuring the longevity of the scholarship program.
The Difference They Make
“One of our graduates started as a dishwasher here at Splendido. With his two-year associates degree in culinary arts, he now works as a sous chef at an assisted living facility in the Phoenix area,” says current co-chair of the scholarship committee and retired metallurgical engineer Bill Horst, Splendido Scholarship Committee Co-Chair. “We are proud of our graduates; they are like our grandchildren.
“It has been a very successful program and exceeded our committee’s expectations for growth,” says Bill. “People who live here understand the importance of education. Getting this scholarship program started was very important because we want to enhance the livelihood of each generation.”
What Inspires You?
Learn more about how the Community Foundation for Southern Arizona can help you make the kind of difference you would like to make.