Harvick Foundation presents $151,200 in scholarship money to CSUB

October 08, 2010

BY MIKE GRIFFITH, Californian staff writer

Kevin Harvick literally drove onto the Cal State Bakersfield campus last February, knocked on the door, so to speak, and asked if the institution would be interested in receiving a scholarship from his foundation.

On Friday, the Kevin Harvick Foundation announced it will fund a full academic scholarship to one CSUB student-athlete per year for the next 12 years.

Harvick, who is battling for the NASCAR Sprint Cup championship, made the presentation of the $151,200 award at a press conference at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, in advance of Sunday's Sprint Cup race.
Harvick started his accession toward NASCAR's highest level of racing by winning a late model title at the old Mesa Marin Raceway while still a student at North High and said this is an ideal way to give back to the community and support higher education.

"I looked back at everything I got to do and I was pretty fortunate to get help from people who didn't necessarily have to help me move up the ranks," he said. "We were out in California (for the February race in Fontana), drove up one day, stopped in and asked if they'd be interested in a scholarship."

The caveat: that the award winner come the Bakersfield area and be in need of a scholarship.

The inaugural recipient of the scholarship is CSUB sophomore and volleyball player Lauren Holderman, who was at Auto Club Speedway to accept the award.

"I'm so grateful for this scholarship," said Holderman. "About five years ago my mother became an unemployed parent trying to raise three teenagers. I worried my whole high school career about getting scholarships so my parents would never have to worry about having enough money to get me though school. I hope that one day I will be able to give back to all the people that helped me succeed through school, volleyball, and my career after college."

Holderman is a 2009 graduate of Bakersfield High, where she was all-league MVP for two consecutive years and was named Bakersfield's 2008 All-Area Player of the Year. She is majoring in sociology and maintained a 3.35 GPA during her freshman year. She is also a coach for Bakersfield Club Jamba.

"I wanted this go to a local student who has lived there and basically doesn't have the money to go to school," Harvick said. "Bakersfield has been a huge part of everything we've done and I felt it was important to let people know where the money is going."

Harvick and his wife, DeLana, formed the Kevin Harvick Foundation (KHF) earlier this year to support programs that positively enrich the lives of children throughout the United States. Other programs supported by the KHF include a camper cabin at Victory Junction, Baptist Children's Homes of N.C., Boys & Girls Clubs and Kevin's Krew.

A dinner/auction and a golf tournament were held earlier this year in Bakersfield and Harvick said there will be another golf tournament and dinner here next year.