(Santa Ana, CA) - The annual Ed Arnold Golf Classic, which continues to receive the loyal support of alumni, individuals and corporations, is more important than ever this year as it returns to an in-person platform. This signature philanthropic event will see dozens of participants gather together for 18 holes all for a good cause: the funds will directly benefit the Santa Ana College (SAC) Student Athletic Program, the Athletic Hall of Fame and Student-Athlete scholarships. The event will be held Monday, May 17, at the Strawberry Farms Golf Club in Irvine.
Craig Realty Group is the title sponsor for the event, sponsoring for the third time. President and Chief Executive Officer Steven Craig attended SAC from September 1973 to June of 1975, and obtained his Associate Degree in Business Administration before transferring to the University of Southern California. His company is renowned for its portfolio of commercial outlet centers, which extend across seven states. After last year’s event was moved to a virtual format due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Craig said he is glad to see the golf tournament back to being held in-person.
“I had a fantastic college experience at Santa Ana College. I was fortunate enough to participate in a number of sports and activities while I was there," Craig said. "I received a really high-quality education at the same time [and] it catapulted me into bigger and better things, which was an important step in my entire collegiate experience.”
Steven Craig playing tennis for Santa Ana College in 1973.
Craig played tennis and participated in student government at SAC and said having those extracurricular experiences helped to keep him grounded and motivated.
The event is put together by the SAC Foundation, in collaboration with the Ed Arnold Golf Classic Committee and the SAC Kinesiology & Athletic Department, whose mission is to ensure that no student is denied access to education at the college due to financial constraints. SAC Foundation Executive Director Christina Romero said this event will directly benefit students at the college and enrich the programs and facilities they use.
“This event provides scholarships for student-athletes, supplemental program funding, and helps with facilities costs, but it’s much more than that. Athletes have some of the highest completion and retention rates because they feel connected to a community that cares about them in the college, and they receive additional mentoring and guidance that makes all the difference," said Romero. "Athletic programs really are a game changer for our students, no pun intended. Many capital improvements and student programming have been born out of these funds, a true testament to the power of philanthropy here at Santa Ana College.”
In addition to Craig Realty Group, Aitken, Aitken & Cohn, Union Bank, The First American Financial Corporation, Citizen’s Business Bank, Cal Empire Engineering, Inc., Facilities Planning & Program Services, Crevier Classic Cars, SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union, and others are all underwriting this important event.
The Ed Arnold Golf Classic Committee encourages everyone who loves golf and wants to support student-athletes, during this critical time in their college careers, to join on May 17. “We are excited to host this in-person tournament, and hope to see everyone out on the green,” Romero adds.
Ed Arnold with golfers at the 2018 Golf Classic.
Most intercollegiate sports at the college unfortunately are still on hold due to the threat of COVD-19 transmission, leaving those student-athletes without coaches and teams that help keep them grounded. The pandemic restrictions have affected student-athletes tremendously, and Romero hopes that anyone who has the capability of donating and a love of sports considers participating in the event.
The Ed Arnold Golf Classic was named after the eponymous alum and beloved sportscaster from Orange County and the Los Angeles area. Arnold attended SAC in 1961 and played for the college football team. He later transferred to California State University Long Beach, where he graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Speech, with an emphasis in Radio and Film. He continues to advocate for and is actively involved in the Santa Ana College Athletic Hall of Fame executive committee.
For more information or to register for the golf tournament, visit http://bit.ly/EACG2021. With an in-person event, there are many opportunities to get involved for SAC student-athletes.
To learn more about the Santa Ana College Foundation, its mission and how you can donate, visit sac.edu/foundation or call the SAC Foundation office at (714) 564-6075.
About Santa Ana College
Santa Ana College (SAC), which turned 100 years old in 2015, serves about 18,000 students each semester at its main campus in Santa Ana. The college prepares students for transfer to four-year institutions, provides invaluable workforce training, and customized training for business and industry. In addition, another 11,000 students are served through the college’s School of Continuing Education located at Centennial Education Center. Ranked as one of the nation’s top two-year colleges awarding associate degrees to Latino and Asian students, the college is also recognized throughout the state for its comprehensive workforce training programs for nurses, firefighters, law enforcement and other medical personnel. SAC is one of two comprehensive colleges under the auspices of the Rancho Santiago Community College District.
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