Wed, Aug 25 2010
LeTourneau University (LETU) has received a $5 million gift to establish an endowed scholarship fund for home-schooled students. The gift, from an anonymous donor, announced today at the university convocation by LETU President Dr. Dale A. Lunsford, is believed to be the single largest endowment for home-school scholarships ever established.
“The generous donor sees the critical need to endow scholarships for future generations and believes deeply in the value of the kind of quality Christian education that LeTourneau University offers,” Lunsford said.
The endowment places LETU on the leading edge of a rising trend seen across campuses, as more students are graduating from a home-schooled environment. According to the Department of Education National Center for Education Statistics, the number of home-schooled students has increased 74 percent from 1999 to 2007, to more than 1.5 million. The number of home-schooled students at LETU has risen in the past 13 years from 2 percent of the incoming student population in 1997 to 18 percent in the current incoming class for 2010. Additionally, home-schoolers have proven to perform as well or above average, on college entrance exams, as compared to private school or public school students.
LETU’s mission over the past year has been to increase endowments for scholarships across the board. This $5 million gift, added to the nearly $1.5 million for other new scholarships endowed this year, brings the school to nearly $6.5 million in new endowed scholarships this year alone.
“Our goal as a university is to equip our students to impact every workplace in every nation for Christ,” said Vice President for Development Ben Y. March. “It is a priority at LETU to build our endowment funds to help support our students and their parents so these talented students can fulfill that goal.”
The annual award of LETU’s Home-school Scholarship Fund is set at $3,000 and is renewable over four academic years.
For the 2010-2011 academic year, 15 students have been selected for the LETU Home-school Scholarship. Recipients are: Thomas Arnold, Estes Park, Colo., mechanical engineering; Rachel Barthold, San Antonio, Texas, interdisciplinary studies; Thomas Bryant, Forrest City, Ariz., mechanical engineering; David Cowan, Homosassa, Australia, mission aviation; Eric Fisher, Fredericksburg, Texas, mechanical engineering technology; Bradley Huddleston, Payette, Idaho, mechanical engineering; Timothy Lahan, Salem, N.H., professional flight; Douglas Meek, Baton Rouge, La., mechanical engineering; Christopher Schultz, Cherryville, N.C., civil engineering; Jonathan Sculley, Norcross, Ga., electrical engineering; Kevin Smith, Coatesville, Penn., mission aviation; Rebecca Sparling, Crestwood, Ky., mission aviation; Patrick Tejada, Surprise, Ariz., mechanical engineering technology; Brittan “Luke” Waggoner, Colorado Springs, Colo., mission aviation; and David Wright, Chandler, Texas, mechanical engineering.
Eligibility is based on a student’s enrollment in the traditional, full-time degree program on the Longview, Texas campus and a demonstrated financial need based on the completion of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), also required each subsequent year for scholarship renewal. Students must enroll for at least 12 credit hours as new students to LETU. High school grades and test scores, such as the ACT and SAT, will be considered. Annual scholarship renewals will consider college grade point averages.
“Students and their families who are interested in applying for these home-school scholarships can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to request information,” said Vice President for Enrollment Services Linda Fitzhugh. “Home-schooled students are typically very successful at LETU because they come prepared to achieve their academic goals. The deadline to apply is Jan. 15, with notification of awards to be in early spring each year.”
LETU was recently recognized in U.S. News and World Report’s annual rankings of “America’s Best Colleges” as one of the top 10 universities among private schools in Texas and above all state universities in Texas in the same category. LETU offers more than 60 graduate and undergraduate programs in a variety of liberal arts with flagship programs in aeronautical science and engineering.
LeTourneau University is an interdenominational Christian university located in Longview, Texas, offering academic majors in aeronautical science, business, education, engineering, health care, the humanities and sciences. LeTourneau University also offers graduate and undergraduate degree programs for working adults online and at educational centers in Austin, Bedford, Dallas, Houston and Tyler.