MARIETTA, OHIO — Washington State Community College (WSCC) accepted a $2,500 donation to the Wendy’s Adoption Scholarship on Tuesday morning at the Wendy’s located on Muskingum Drive. The donation was made possible by local Wendy’s franchise owners Ray and Kim Blackburn who established the scholarship fund in 2013 with a $17,000 donation. The WSCC Foundation offers the scholarship to college-age students who are adopted or have been part of the foster care system.
In addition to owning numerous franchises in Ohio and W.Va., the Blackburns are passionate about supporting children in foster care by helping them find permanent homes and gain access to education. The Blackburns were inspired by their own experiences as foster parents to act as advocates for adoption and support the cause through fundraising for the Dave Thomas Adoption Fund and the creation of the WSCC Wendy’s Adoption Scholarship.
Each year, the Pioneer Antique Auto Club (PAAC) of the Mid-Ohio Valley holds numerous car shows from June through October in Parkersburg and Williamstown W.VA. with proceeds used to benefit different causes throughout the community. Through a partnership with the Blackburns, the PAAC holds Wendy’s Car Shows at the Parkersburg Wendy’s on Gihon Road. From 2015 to 2018 the club raised more than $20,000 in support of local charities, organizations, and causes. This year, the group held five Wendy’s Car Shows with proceeds benefitting the WSCC Wendy’s Adoption Scholarship.
Since the scholarship fund was endowed, the WSCC Foundation has awarded 15 students a total of $24,000. This fall alone, four students received the scholarship, including Johnathon Carpenter, an accounting major in his second year at WSCC. When asked if there was anything he would like to say to the donors who made this scholarship possible Carpenter stated, “I appreciate the scholarship more than they might ever understand. Every penny counts; it was huge for me and allowed me the opportunity to be a first generation college student.”