CI Receives Endowed Scholarship Gift from Camarillo Women’s Club

camarillo womens club check presentation

CSU Channel Islands was honored to be chosen as the recipient of a generous bequest from the Camarillo Women’s Club.  The club had received a $100,000 bequest from longtime member Barbara Stirzel upon her death. The group presented a $100,000 check to CI’s President Richard R. Rush at a recent meeting of the CSU Channel Islands Foundation Board.

Barbara Stirzel had lived in many places before coming to Camarillo, including Washington, D.C., where she worked for the U.S. State Department, and Saudi Arabia, where she was employed by the American Oil Company.  Returning to the States, she moved to Los Angeles and met and married her husband Bob.  When they moved to Camarillo, she became very interested in the history of Camarillo and contributed her time and efforts to many volunteer endeavors.

For a number of years the club had awarded smaller scholarships to Frontier High School, a continuation school.  However, Barbara Gage, President of the Camarillo Women’s Club, and her board felt this gift was big enough that the group should use it to create a meaningful way to make a difference in the lives of young people in Camarillo.

The group decided to create an endowed scholarship fund at CSU Channel Islands that would award four scholarships each year from the endowment earnings. Marti DeLaO, Director of Development for Donor Relations and Annual Fund at CI, stated, “the scholarships are extremely important as they reduce the amount of financial debt a student incurs trying to fund his or her education.”

Criteria for the scholarship award includes that a student be a Camarillo resident, a U.S. citizen, and a full-time student at CI.  Barbara Gage stated, “The group hopes to have a scholarship re-cap at its final meeting each year to meet new scholarship recipients and find out how existing recipients are doing.”

Gage mentioned that the Camarillo Women’s Club had started with six members as a social club.  As they grew, they joined the General Federation of Women’s Clubs (GFWC) of California (CFWC), becoming a service rather than a social club. She added, “We are a small group and focus on giving back to the Camarillo community.  We feel this use of Barbara Stirzel’s gift to the Camarillo Women’s Club would really please her.”