Oh, Christmas Tree: Garcia family embraces the C of I

Ribbons and ornaments inhabit the radiating Christmas tree. A stocking hangs beside it, reading “Baby Football Yotes’ First Christmas – 2014 – Stars are born!” The whole scene looks as if a hurricane of purple and gold has rained down upon a corner of the Garcia household.

Michael and Raquel Garcia purchased the College of Idaho-themed tree at the Canyon County Festival of Trees. The tree, designed by Lisa Gabiola-Weitz, won best in show, and it’s easy to see why. It’s bright, creative and full of spirit — everything the C of I represents. And the Garcias plan on donating the tree to the C of I after the holidays.

Although the Garcias are not alumni of the College—they have a son who attends the C of I—they’ve been adopted into the YoteFam and are actively involved on campus.

“We have a lot of connections, so it’s nice to give back,” Raquel Garcia said.

The Garcias believe giving back to higher education provides young people with opportunities for a better education and a brighter future. After meeting alumni and College staff at their first C of I Scholarship Gala two years, the Garcias were sold on becoming involved at the C of I. The couple, who own Corporate Office Installations in Boise, said they always look for alumni to do business with.

“That’s why we’ve become involved at the College,” Michael Garcia said. “We think the alumni base is phenomenal.”

“Everyone we’ve met has embraced us,” Raquel Garcia added.

And upon looking at the holiday addition to their household, it’s easy to see the Garcias have embraced the purple and gold in return.

Founded in 1891, The College of Idaho is the state’s oldest private liberal arts college. The C of I has a legacy of academic excellence, a winning athletics tradition and a history of producing successful graduates, including seven Rhodes Scholars and 14 Marshall, Truman and Goldwater Scholars. The College’s beautiful, residential campus is located in Caldwell. Its distinctive PEAK Curriculum challenges students to attain competencies in the four knowledge peaks of the humanities, natural sciences, social sciences and a professional field—empowering them to earn a major and three minors in four years. For more information, visit