Perlas receives COS 'Coat of Many Colors'

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald
COS Vice President of Academic Affairs, Dr. Char Perlas, shows off the “Coat of Many Colors,” which she must wear to board meetings and other functions this year. The coat is bestowed on a different person each year.

More than $12,000 was raised at College of the Siskiyous’ annual Foundation Scholarship Fundraising Dinner and Dessert Auction Sept. 12 at the new Weed Community Center.

Staff, faculty and community members attended and listened to scholarship recipient Riley Witherell of Mount Shasta speak after dinner about how the scholarships are helping her to obtain and education and pursue her career goals.

Dawnie Slabaugh, Director of Public Relations and College Foundation, also gave an update on the Siskiyou Promise grant which began in fall 2016. This fall, 174 first year students from Siskiyou and Modoc County high schools are attending COS as Promise students, according to a press release from the college. The Siskiyou Promise grant currently pays for tuition and fees, as well as a $200 book voucher each semester. Students receiving a Siskiyou Promise grant must be enrolled as a full time COS student to be eligible for funding.

Following the speaker program the fun really began. Slabaugh along with speech and communications instructor Jayne Turk coaxed guests to raise their bids during the dessert auction to support the scholarship fund. In addition to the dessert auction, guests also participated in a live auction and a silent auction.

The Foundation Scholarship Committee said in the release that they sincerely appreciate the many local businesses and individuals who provided auction items and desserts.

Auctioning of the Coat of Many Colors is always the highlight of this event. Slabaugh provided a brief history of the Foundation and the Scholarship dinner, first held in 1984, and the famed coat.

In 1986, former COS President Dr. Eugene Schumacher donated the coat, a gift from a Middle Eastern exchange student, to be auctioned off and worn by the lucky winner to a designated event or meeting. That year, COS Women’s Basketball and Volleyball Coach Tom Powers was the lucky recipient.

Several years later the Mongolian Hat was donated by Ernie Nagel of Mount Shasta. Since 1986, 34 “lucky” individuals have had to wear the coat to designated functions.

This years’ 2019 recipient of Coat of Many Colors is Dr. Char Perlas, COS Vice President of Academic Affairs. Perlas will need to wear the Coat at all COS Board of Trustees meetings she attends over the course of the next year as well as various meetings held on campus including Integrated Planning and Budget Committee, Instruction Council, and College Council.

For more information about the COS Scholarship Program, the Siskiyou Promise grant, or if interested in joining the COS Foundation Scholarship Committee or learning about the Foundation Board of Directors, call (530) 938-5373 or send an email to