Friday, November 02, 2007
Encouraging Minority Entrepreneurship
Springfield’s Drury University and St. Louis-based investment firm Edward Jones announced a new scholarship recently targeted at minority students in southwest Missouri and northwest Arkansas but open to students throughout the country. Drury is offering 10 $10,000 scholarships for incoming freshmen and “will change the face of the university,” according to Interim President Todd Parnell. Coupled with other institutional financial aid, it will be possible for a deserving student to have his or her tuition completely covered.
Now I know this may not seem unusual for an institution of higher education to offer diversity scholarships, but it is significant for this area of the Ozarks because there are so few non-Caucasians here. Our population here in Springfield is over 90% Caucasian.
The Edward Jones Minority Scholarship Program at Drury University will open many doors. Students who receive the scholarships will also interact with local and national business leaders through Drury’s Edward Jones Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, and they’ll participate in internships and training with Edward Jones. Last year Drury’s Board Chairman John Beuerlein and his wife, Crystal, partnered with Edward Jones in donating the money to establish the Center, and Drury is fast enhancing its reputation for providing a great business education with an emphasis on preparing students to soar in today’s global economy.
I suspect many first generation college students will have a shot at a top-notch education because of this generosity and foresight. And this first generation college graduate thinks that’s a right fine thing.
Note: Check Drury's Web site for more information at http://www.drury.edu/index.cfm
photo: Emily Pitts from Edward Jones is charged with implementing the firm's inclusion initiative.