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$2.5M Pledge Funds “Raye White Scholars”

$2M Pledge Funds “Raye White Scholars”Students will have additional scholarships available starting in the 2012-13 academic year, thanks to a generous $2.5 million pledge by University friend Raye White. The recent gift will become the Raye G. White Endowed Scholarship. When fully funded, the Raye White Scholars program will support an annual cohort of about 11 recipients, who will each benefit from a $2,500 annual scholarship, with about 40-45 students holding the scholarship at any one time.

The Raye White Scholars will be new or returning undergraduate and graduate students at the University who have been accepted for full-time, regular admission. The recipients will have demonstrated academic excellence, leadership skills and a commitment to their faith. The Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid will determine the recipient(s) of the award.

Fr. Mike Buentello, CSB, director of Campus Ministry, said he thanks White for her generosity, and her support of students can make a difference on campus and in students’ lives beyond their time at the University.

“The fact that the scholarships are based on leadership, commitment to faith and community service will help to shape our students into being morally responsible people in our society,” Fr. Buentello said.

In addition to maintaining academic scholarship requirements, the Scholars will perform 15 hours of community service annually, including a community service project designed by the cohort to benefit the UST and Greater Houston community.  

Fr. Buentello said the scholarship supports the University’s desire to educate the whole person.

“We want our students to be leaders not only in their careers but also in faith and to demonstrate leadership in service to the community throughout their lives,” he said. “It is my prayer that the presence of these students will help to inspire others to be leaders in faith and service to others.” 

UST President Dr. Robert Ivany said the University is grateful for White’s gift and her continued support of students.

“Raye White possesses the quiet strength, elegant dignity and warm generosity that inspires all of us,” Dr. Ivany said. “We hope that many generations of Raye White Scholars at the University of St. Thomas will have the opportunity to emulate her faith in God, integrity and professionalism.”

White said she is pleased to make the donation to provide scholarships to deserving students entering the University of St. Thomas.

“By accepting these scholarships and the service to the campus community that they require, the recipients will take a major step to graduating as leaders of faith and character,” White said. “I send future Raye White Scholars my very best wishes and encouragement.”

White is a longtime supporter of the University. She is the executive vice president and a director at Fayez Sarofim & Co. She is serving in her fourth term as a member of the UST Board of directors, having served on the board from 1992 to 1998 and since 2007. White also serves as a vice chair of the Capital Campaign Cabinet.