Gala raises record-breaking amount to support students

The Seattle Central Foundation hosted its most successful gala ever in early May, raising nearly $360,000 for scholarships and college programs.

In early May, the Seattle Central Foundation held its annual Believe gala to raise essential funds for students and programs at the college. About 490 attendees generously gave nearly $360,000, making this year’s gala the most successful ever. Some of these funds will be used for scholarships, including the Seattle Promise scholarship, which covers the full cost of tuition for any student with a 3.0 GPA, enrolls full time and demonstrates financial need. Funds raised will also support the work of the Seattle Central Foundation, which supports instructional programs, student emergency assistance, faculty development grants and tutoring services.

Students were at the center of the event. Videos of two scholarship recipients, Joshua Byrd and Zamzam Mohamed, provided powerful testimonials to the importance of scholarships in changing students’ lives. Up for bid at the silent auction were works donated by Creative Academy students, a boat crafted by Wood Technology students and more. Apparel Design students created cloth sleeves for wine bottles, and Culinary Academy students made cakes for the annual dessert dash, which invites donors to give money to get their first choice of dessert for their table. Groups of first-year Creative Academy students also created short inspirational videos that highlighted the importance of education and scholarships.

This year, the Foundation also launched a new tradition of honoring those who have provided exceptional support to the college and its students. Joy Gulmon-Huri, the director of the Seattle Culinary Academy was awarded the inaugural “Power of Education Award.” A video profile paid tribute to Joy’s nearly 30 years of commitment to students, the culinary program and community service.