You are using an outdated browser. For a faster, safer browsing experience, upgrade for free today.

Lander Celebrates Dreams of Scholarship Donors, Students

Lander scholarship donors and students had the opportunity to talk during the 39th annual Eleanor Teal Donor Appreciation and Scholarship Celebration. Photo by Deb Crenshaw-Nygro

Heartfelt stories of perseverance and resilience were told throughout the 39th annual Eleanor Teal Donor Appreciation and Scholarship Celebration at Lander University.

From students describing how scholarships have funded their academic journey to the donors whose generosity makes these awards possible, Lander celebrated the important role that scholarships have in supporting future dreams.

Sylvia Brooks Grubb, ’59, received a Self Foundation Scholarship to help fund her associate’s degree in nursing. A graduate of Lander’s first nursing program, Grubb had a successful career as a hospital nurse and school nurse leader.

“I have loved every aspect of nursing,” said Grubb, who was named the 1999 South Carolina School Nurse of the Year. “I don’t know what I would have done without my nursing background. It was Lander and the education I received in the nursing program that inspired me.”

Grubb believes her life would have been vastly different without the Self scholarship. “I would not have had the life that I have lived without the financial support for my education. It was so important to me and why I have made sure to pay it back to my alma mater and pay it forward to students whose lives will be changed by our contributions. I’m pleased I have had the opportunity to do this.”

Dr. Jerry Wilson, a Lander professor emeritus of physics, said he was supported by a scholarship to attend Ohio University. “I had a full scholarship. Establishing scholarships at Lander is my way of paying it forward for another generation.”

Wilson said attending the annual dinner for donors and students “makes me quite proud to be able to talk to the students and see how the awards are having an impact for them.”

Robyn Hoffman, recently named vice president of University Advancement and executive director of The Lander Foundation, said more than 400 students received scholarships from University donors this year.

She quoted an adage about the impact of generosity on future generations, describing Lander’s benefactors as “people who are planting trees under whose shade you will never sit.”

Hoffman said, “We truly, truly appreciate you and the impact that you have had at Lander.”

Scholarship donor Steve Wohlwend, ’81, chair of The Lander Foundation Board of Directors, expressed his gratitude for the opportunities that Lander gives its students, saying that the best things he experienced at Lander – “the relationship between students and professors” – still exist.

The University, he said, has “a fantastic past with a fantastic future.”

Dr. Betsy M. McDowell, a professor emerita of nursing at Lander and former chair of the University’s nursing department, established a scholarship in 2007 for nursing students. Today, the scholarship has evolved into an award that recognizes outstanding students during the School of Nursing’s pinning ceremony.

“The award is designed to encourage students to pursue graduate degrees and become nursing faculty,” McDowell said. “It is critical that we develop more nursing faculty so that we can teach more students. A serious nursing shortage exists, and having more nursing faculty will make a difference.”

Each donor makes a major investment in the lives and the futures of students, who spend time in class and studying and also serve in leadership positions on campus, represent the University on athletic teams and are members of clubs and organizations, said Dr. Richard Cosentino, Lander University president.

“Your very generous gifts are going to multiply many times,” he said.





See a full photo album of the event here: