Dating back to the spring of 1939, the Saint Ignatius High School Scholarship Drive has been a fixture of the school calendar. While it has taken many different forms, it has always depended on students, parents, alumni and the community of Greater Cleveland to reach its success.
The Scholarship Drive first began as an effort by our Fathers' Club. The club first sponsored a Bingo Night in 1938. At this event, a ten-cent raffle offering a $1,000 prize succeeded beyond expectations. As a means to help students pay tuition at the end of the Great Depression, the Board of Directors discussed the option of expanding the raffle into its own event. By 1940, this became the biggest moneymaker of all Fathers' Club events. The drive lasted for eight to nine weeks and ended in the beginning of May.
Prizes after World War II also reflected a dramatic shift in culture. As soldiers came home, prizes for the raffle reflected the demand for consumer goods. In 1946, the grand prize was a Ford Sedan. Other prizes ranged from a General Electric refrigerator to an electric roaster. In 1947, a "New Modern Home" at 20691 Stanford Avenue in Fairview, Ohio took its place as the grand prize. Tickets became fifty cents each, or a book of fifteen for six dollars.
Today, you can join by purchasing a $5 ticket for your chance to win the grand prize of $50,000.
The 81st Annual Scholarship Drive brought in a total of $602,000 towards tuition assistance.
Special Events Director Melissa Murphy has been running the Scholarship Drive since 2004. "In a lot of ways, the drive has remained the same," Murphy says. "We're still using the same hopper to mix up the tickets as we did in the 50s!" And the goal of the drive remains the same: to support tuition assistance making it possible for students of all financial backgrounds to attend Saint Ignatius High School.