By Assunta Ng
Northwest Asian Weekly
The University of Washington’s business school has 72 undergraduate scholarships, but none of them is specifically designed for Asian Americans.
A group of Asian American entrepreneurs made history by establishing the first API undergraduate scholarship for the UW Michael G. Foster Business School on Oct. 1 at the Fairmont Olympic Hotel. Over $50,000 net was raised from an audience of 300.
The money will be set aside for one year to grow $2,500 in interest for the first Asian and Pacific Islander scholarship recipient at the undergrad level. At the graduate level, former UW Regent Ark Chin has endowed an API scholarship for MBA students.
Ranked 33rd nationwide among all national business schools, the business school has 1739 undergraduates currently with 29 percent Asian Americans, 2 percent Blacks and 3 percent Latinos. However, both Black and Latino communities have endowed scholarships for their own respective ethnic groups.
The honorees supported the scholarship endowment by being sponsors and pledging funds. Both Uwajimaya Chairman Tomio Moriguchi and Ben Zhang responded with a $5,000 sponsorship each. KAGRO was the first to pledge $15,000 in five years for the API scholarship. Judy Tam,
Another $15,000 was raised through a live auction with six items. Donated by Tony Au, team captain of International Dance Team and Ying Yung Tong, a record-breaking amount of $3,000 was raised for two Chinese lion dance performances. Usually, $550 was the bid price for past auctions on lion dance.
Organized by Michael Verchot, director of the UW Business & Economic Development Center (BEDC), the API scholarship committee is made up of Judy Tam, UW former regent Ark Chin, Tomio Moriguchi, principal of Mother of Pearl Doris Quan, co-founder of Avidian Technologies James Wong and this article’s writer. ♦
Assunta Ng can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.