Simple acts of kindness and a generous dose of Cougar Spirit are what inspired Recent Graduate President’s Associates, Joey and Erika (Bower) Addington, to complete their circle of gratitude. As academic and need-based scholarship recipients themselves, Joey (’05 Land. Arch.) and Erika (’03, ’09 Elem. & Sec. Ed.) were grateful for the generosity of WSU donors.

“Knowing people had so much confidence in us that they decided to support our schooling really raised the bar as far as personal expectations go,” they say. Scholarships made it possible for them to enjoy the “complete experience” at WSU.  Although academics were always their chief priority, Joey and Erika realize scholarships also enabled them to participate in student organizations, intramural sports, volunteer opportunities, and athletic events.

Scholarships can make it possible for WSU students to take advantage of the full college experience.
Scholarships can make it possible for WSU students to take advantage of the full college experience.

The two married in 2005 and currently live in Spokane, where they have put their degrees to work. Both attribute their professional success to the education, experiences, and opportunities that made them well-rounded students. “WSU prepared us with the knowledge to get ahead, but also to learn and adapt in our ever-changing fields of study,” they say.

Joey and Erika will always appreciate the people who believed in their abilities and entrusted the financial help that fueled their success as students at WSU and in the years following graduation. “Donors made a decision to see to it we achieved our goals,” they note, “and now in our 30s, we…are completing our circle of gratitude by giving back.”

As a couple, Joey and Erika have supported WSU since 2006. Their annual gifts help bolster scholarships for student-athletes and the students who follow in their academic footsteps. Joey’s first gift to WSU was directed to the Senior Scholarship of his graduating class. In 2009, he began serving on the committee overseeing the new Recent Graduate President’s Associates program. He is excited by the progress being made in connecting and building relationships among those who graduated from WSU within the past 10 years.

“I’ve had the opportunity to promote the Recent Grad PA program to alumni who graduated before and after me, many of whom are no longer in the eastern Washington area,” he says. “We appreciate the help we received and find this an easy way to pay it forward.”

Click here to learn more about the Recent Graduate President’s Associates program.