After his diagnosis, Derek received treatment in Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids and Muskegon. When being treated in Muskegon, the Johnson Family Cancer Center handled his visits and chemotherapy.
Our event has raised over $20,000 for the Johnson Family Cancer Center in the first four years and we plan on that number continuing to increase. Donations have been used in a number of ways over time, but always help patients directly. JFCC is able to provide patients with gas cards to help offset the cost of traveling to and from the hospitals around the state for appointments and chemotherapy treatments. JFCC also provides a computer for patients to complete personal tasks between treatments and continues to add to the library used by patients. Amber Wallace and her philanthropy team have been extremely supportive of our event and always display the deepest gratitude for our contributions.
Derek graduated from Mona Shores High School and was well on his way to finishing school at Western Michigan University when diagnosed. We have been fortunate enough to start scholarships at both institutions to encourage high learning in the West Michigan community. Below, our contributions are outlined.
Mona Shores High School
$1,000 Derek Sagan Memorial Scholarship
Danielle Smith-Walker has been an enormous help in awarding this scholarship. Students applying for the scholarship write an essay on Cancer affecting their own personal lives - whether that individual was diagnosed, lost a family member or had someone close to them persevere. Danielle has been able to select two winners each year after reading the essays submitted. This years winners will be announced in May, 2016.
Western Michigan University
$500 Derek Sagan Memorial Scholarship
Currently, this scholarship money is put into a pool of scholarship money and awarded as the school sees fit. By next year, we hope to have a Derek Sagan Memorial Scholarship to award to a Haworth College of Business Student selected through a application, and essay or interview.
2016-2017 Winner:: Andrew McCotter, Senior, Marketing Major
2015-2016 Winner: Jonah Shafer, Freshman, Marketing Major (Norton Shores, MI)