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World War II Vet Donates $1.4 Million to Scholarship Fund

Lord Fairfax Community College in Virginia can now hand out over $50,000 in scholarships a year, thanks to a $1.4 million donation from a local World War II veteran.

MIDDLETOWN, Va. -  Charles Ross, a Front Royal resident and World War II veteran has named Lord Fairfax Community College as the beneficiary of his $1.4 million estate.

"Charles Ross believed very much in a strength of character, community service and then academic achievement,” said LFCC”s President, Cheryl Thompson-Stacy.

Thanks to the donation, LFCC will now be able to offer 20 to 25 $2,000 need-based scholarships, and one $7,000 fellowship, which is the first of its kind at LFCC.

"Students needs to have a 3.0 or above GPA, be interested in community service and involved in helping the community and also show that character," said Thompson-Stacy.

The fellowship will cover the cost of a year's worth of tuition, books and a $1,000 stipend to a new computer.

"I think it's wonderful,” said Mary Dyke a student at LFCC, who currently benefits from another scholarship program. “There's a lot of people who can't afford college or they think they can't afford college, so receiving that scholarship, or any other scholarship is going to help you reach your goal in earning your associates degree."

Along with the new Ross scholarships, the Lord Fairfax Foundation gives out $200,000 a year to students in need of financial aid. That includes anything from a $25 gas card to a $7,000 fellowship.

"For the most recently completed 2012-2013 school year, we gave away about $13.5 million to over 4,000 students. That includes grants, scholarships, loans and work study," said Aaron Whitacre, Director of Financial Aid at LFCC.

And the financial aid department encourages students and parents to ask questions when it comes to figuring out their eligibility and filling out applications for grants and scholarships.

"We’re dealing with a lot of students that apply, a lot of families that apply and have unique situation or don't know. We do this everyday, we know the answers and we're willing to help with whatever the situation may be," Whitacre said.

Students in need of financial aid for the 2014-2015 school year, and who meet the requirements are encouraged to apply.

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