Marci Wing is a Pride Foundation Scholarship volunteer. In honor of the 20th anniversary of Pride Foundation’s Scholarship Program, she shares with us her story and what has kept her coming back to volunteer every year since 2007.
I’ve always admired the great work Pride Foundation has done across the region via grants and technical assistance to organizations, collectives, and coalitions. So, I was delighted to learn that Pride Foundation also helped individual students through its scholarship program. There is a saying that when a friend asks a friend to join in to help, good things happen. That was my case. I was honored to be asked by a close friend to volunteer for the selection process. I’m a strong believer in the worth of an education, especially for nontraditional learners and those from disadvantaged communities. Pride Foundation’s scholarships are, therefore, extra appealing, as they can go toward any postsecondary educational pursuit.
Each year I return as a volunteer, I cherish the notion that I get to be introduced to the next generation of compassionate, courageous people who will contribute to our communities. I am inspired to know that Pride Foundation scholarships unleash the human potential to do good deeds for so many people. Paying it forward by investing in scholars right now is the best way for us to build a strong community.
Additionally, I’ve had one of my personal values reaffirmed through being a Pride Foundation scholarship volunteer: it matters a great deal to me that the underdog gets a fair shake in life. It is also important that I surround myself with people who feel the same way on this issue. I count myself as extremely lucky that I get to be part of Pride Foundation through a program that makes deserving “underdogs” come out as winners.
While I can’t assign a favorite to just one memory as a volunteer, I do have a favorite “feeling.” At the conclusion of every scholarship round, I feel extremely happy to have launched another generation of leaders. It is such a cliché, but my hope it that these students will carry forward great work to make the world more equitable, caring, and just.
To all the scholars, I would like to wish you a big congratulations! You’ve done well to deserve this support. Charge ahead and don’t hold back!
Christina is Pride Foundation’s Community Giving Manager. Email Christina.