Car enthusiasts come in all shapes, sizes—and ages.
Recognizing this, and aiming to inspire the next generation of auto lovers, the Collectors Foundation awards scholarships and grants to organizations that are committed to both hands-on education and making a difference in the lives of young people through the appeal of historic vehicles and vessels.
An Art Center partner since 2005, the Foundation supports undergraduate scholarships in Art Center’s Transportation Design program, as well as scholarships for students interested in transportation classes in Art Center’s Public Programs, Saturday High for students in grades 9-12 and Art Center for Kids for students in grades 4-8.
Eunice Han, age 16, of Rowland Heights, Calif., received a Collectors Foundation scholarship in 2011 to cover the cost of an Introduction to Transportation Design class in Saturday High. “The opportunities given through this scholarship helped set my path by revealing to me the incredible role of art and design in our community,” says Eunice. “I realized that without a doubt I had to be a part of it.”
The class also opened Eunice’s eyes to the wide range of design careers available to her. She is now considering a career in industrial design. “I enjoy being able to create solutions,” she explains, “whether that be of a product or even a graphic representation.”
From an early age, Greg Bagdasaryan of Glendale, Calif., had dreamed of designing “killer” cars. He began Art Center for Kids classes at age 12 and received a Collectors Foundation scholarship at 18, which enabled him to take a Saturday High beginning transportation class.
“The class changed my perspective by showing me how to sketch simple shapes and use them to express my ideas for cars and other things,” says Greg. “It was a great first step in learning what design really was and how to think about ideas and show what can and cannot work.”
Now a student at Pasadena City College, Greg is working hard to improve his design skills as he builds a portfolio that he hopes will gain him admission to Art Center. “It takes a great work ethic,” he adds. “I’ve learned that if you aim for the top, you can succeed. All it takes is that spark of passion.”
The power of cars to inspire the creative spirit is something that the Collectors Foundation understands well. While not every student who receives a Collectors Foundation scholarship sets his or her sights on designing the automobile classics of the future, many describe developing a greater appreciation for design in the auto industry and beyond.