LETTER: Help Support Scholarships for PaliHi Students

Optimist Rich Wilken (center) presenting scholarships to Palisades High School students in 2018.

(Rich Wilken, a past president of the Optimist Club, sent the following letter to Circling the News on June 4 and has allowed us to share it with the community.)

I am writing to ask for your help.

Our Optimist Foundation scholarship program at Palisades High is gaining recognition at the school. This year we received 10 applications from a great group of students. This is a record for us.

For the last two years we have given $2,000 to six outstanding college-bound Pali High students. Even though our fundraising efforts are a little behind past years, we felt it was important to maintain the going pace of $12,000.

In the past we have sent the money directly to the college of the student’s choice.  This year we are making a change to this system.

As College Center counselors and volunteers in that department have observed, most of these students do not have cash to pay for college-related incidentals, such as bedding for dorm rooms and pharmacy products like Kleenex and shampoo.

Because of this we are giving each student a $500 check at graduation and will send the remaining $1,500 to the college to cover a portion of their educational and housing expenses.

Because of COVID we are a little behind on raising money. I am now “passing the hat” in hopes we can raise at least another $3,750 or more from Optimist Club members and other friends and community members, as we did last year.

Three realtors, Michael Edlen, Anthony Marguleas and Marco Rufo, have already given a total of $4,000.

Please join them and other community members by visiting our web site at https://www.palisadesoptimistfoundation.org/donate or mail to PO Box 242. A 501 (c) (3) organization EIN: 95-4706521. Donations are tax-deductible.

Thank you,

Rich Wilken — Pali High Class of Summer 1964


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