The Wenatchee Valley College Foundation has received a gift of $699,000 from the Estate of Hershel & Bette Sparks.

The largesse is the second of two received by WVC from the Sparks Estate and will help in funding its Readiness Bootcamp that provides free tuition for qualifying students and Knights Care Fund which assists students who experience financial hardships due to emergencies.

Foundation director, Rachel Evey, says the gift will help position WVC to better assist those students who are in need.

"We are now very well prepared for the 2024-25 academic year with this incredible gift that will help us respond to those emergency needs as they happen."

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Evey adds the money will be made available immediately with no strings attached.

"The gift is unrestricted, which means that the Foundation's board will be able to respond to any immediate needs that the college approaches the Foundation to fund."

Prior to Hershel's passing in 2009, and Bette's two years later, the Sparks were champions of education and youth development in the Wenatchee Valley; donating heavily to WVC's capital campaign that built the campus's Music & Arts Center where a rehearsal room bears their namesake.

The largesse received by WVC is one of three that was recently distributed by the Sparks Estate, including the Confluence Health Foundation and Saddlerock Presbyterian Church, which each received a gift of $1.7 million.