Helping and serving people was always part of Matthew Myers’ life ambition. A 20-year-old communication student, Myers wasn’t certain about his future but knew that engaging with others would always be important.
After Myers died tragically after a car struck him on campus in 2005, his parents Kevin and Chris wanted to carry on his legacy and passions. Matt’s Run, which marks its fifth year at Cal Poly Pomona, has become an annual fall tradition among students, faculty, staff and area residents to celebrate education and community.
This year’s 5K run/walk is at 8 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 16. Online registration is open now.
Following Matt’s passing, his parents worked with the university to sponsor an event that highlights their son’s passion for running and assists students similar to Matt. In the past four years, the Matthew Myers Memorial Fund has awarded 18 scholarships.
Organizers hope this year’s race will bring the endowment to $100,000, which would allow the scholarship fund to live in perpetuity. After the race, they will present 10 scholarships totaling $5,500.
“Our aim is to move through the tragedy into the spirit of helping others. We are trying to reach out to students who have a lot of the same struggles in life that our son did,” Kevin says. “Our son was not an A student. He had to work very, very hard for whatever it was he got. There is an overwhelming amount of students who are trying to do good things in life, trying to give back to the community, to be helpful to others, and they have some obstacles.”
Matt’s Run boasts a USA Track and Field Certified course that takes participants through the university’s scenic landscape, past the historic Arabian Horse Center and citrus groves. Runners and walkers of all ages will be entertained by the Bronco Pep Band, Broncettes Dance Team and the Bronco Cheer Squad.
Participants may register in advance for $30 for adults/alumni and $15 for all students (not just from Cal Poly Pomona) with school ID. Day-of-event registration fees are an additional $5. The fee includes an event T-shirt, runner ID number, snacks and drinks.
Those who wish to register on the day of the event can do so between 6:30 and 7:45 a.m. Pre-registered competitors may pick up their packets during this time. The Bronco Fitness Center will have a “stretch booth” from 7 to 10 a.m.
Following the race, the awards ceremony will honor the 10 scholarship recipients as well as the top three finishers in seven age divisions. Judges will also present the Myers Cup, a perpetual trophy, to the student organization with the most participation and spirit. Greek Council will sponsor a barbecue.
To register, volunteer or become a sponsor, visit www.mattsrun.org. For more information, contact Laura Peterson at (909) 869-4852.