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LU pledges $200K to scholarship program for local students

Liberty University recently announced a $200,000 donation to the Stay Close, Go Far Promise Scholarship Program, administered by Lynchburg Beacon of Hope.

The program helps high school seniors in Lynchburg City Schools by working to eliminate financial barriers that prevent students from attending college as well as helping to train and retain students to enter the city's workforce.  

LU's donation completes the funding needed to meet Stay Close, Go Far's campaign goal of $7 million, according to a news release issued by the university. 

“We continue to be humbled by and grateful for the leadership support Liberty University continues to afford Beacon of Hope,” Lynchburg Beacon of Hope Executive Director Laura Hamilton said in a news release. “Liberty’s collective innovative thinking has been truly instrumental in the success of our career-driven programs, our student success, and the Stay Close, Go Far Scholarship since Beacon’s earliest days.”

For three years, LU has participated in the scholarship program, which pledges to invest up to $8,000 per student over four years to fund tuition at a partnering higher education institution, including Liberty University and five other area schools. Liberty announced in 2018 it would provide an additional $8,000 to help with the cost of meal plans, giving eligible Lynchburg City Schools graduates up to $16,000 in scholarship aid over four years.

“This partnership is a perfect match for Liberty University,” Liberty University President Jerry Prevo said in the news release. “We want to invest in the young people in our community and help them obtain a college degree so they can fulfill their career dreams.”

About 40 LU students have received financial aid through Beacon of Hope. 

“This partnership with Beacon of Hope is an investment in the future of our community,” said Shon Muldrow, LU’s executive vice president of Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity. “Together, we make sure that prospective students are aware of available scholarships and other programs, such as dual enrollment, transfer opportunities, early enrollment to LU, and so on. Our goal is to present equitable opportunity by providing a portion of unmet need.”

— From staff reports

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