The Edmonds Community College Foundation has received a $550,000 donation from the estate of Eva Gordon — a local centenarian who cared deeply about education.
The Edmonds CC Foundation is one of 17 Washington state community college foundations to receive approximately $550,000 as part of a generous $10 million gift from the Eva Gordon Estate. The estate’s gift is one of the largest to community and technical colleges in Washington state.
“We are very thankful for this exceptionally generous gift,” said Edmonds CC President Dr. Amit B. Singh. “It will make a significant difference for so many of our students. Eva Gordon lived a life in service to others, and her generosity and caring will live on.”
Eva Gordon was a hard-working woman who was ahead of her time. Having lived a long and happy life, she had few regrets, save one: not having a formal education.
“If I had a scholarship when I got out of high school, I could have done so much more,” Gordon said in a 2013 profile by South Seattle College.
Gordon, who passed away in June 2018 at the age of 101, grew up on an orchard in Eugene, Ore. and graduated at the top of her high school class. Little by little, she invested money from meager paychecks to build a fortune and give back to others.
During this time, Gordon loved seeing college students work hard and improve their lives, wishing she could have been a student herself if money hadn’t been so tight in her younger years. “A lot of people didn’t know the wealth she had. If there was a coupon for two-for-one at Applebee’s, she was all about that,” said John Jacobs, her godson and estate representative. “She liked seeing students working, earning and doing things. Her goal was to provide an opportunity for those folks who could ill-afford it, whether vocational training or an academic skill.”
With jobs, family responsibilities, and a median age of 30, Edmonds Community College students are often one step away from having to quit college to pay their bills. The college foundations receiving the money will be able to help students pay for books, fees, supplies, technology needs, housing, transportation, food, child care, and unexpected financial emergencies that could otherwise stand in the way of their success. Edmonds CC plans to use the funds for scholarships and student success programs.
Other foundations receiving donations from the Eva Gordon Estate include: Bates Technical College, Cascadia College, Clover Park Technical College, Everett Community College, Grays Harbor College, Green River Community College, Highline Community College, Lake Washington Institute of Technology, North Seattle College, Pierce College Foundation, Renton Technical College, Seattle Central College, Shoreline Community College, Skagit Valley College, South Puget Sound Community College, and Tacoma Community College.