By Zack Bennett
Lander University today announced that the University has received a grant of $25,000 from VisionGreenwood to provide scholarship opportunities that will help Greenwood County residents finish their baccalaureate education.
At the beginning of the 2021-22 academic year, Lander University identified a number of “stop-out” students residing in Greenwood County. A “stop-out” is defined as a student who is in good academic standing with the University, but has decided to discontinue their education for a period of time, usually for financial reasons. Lander immediately began reaching out to these students in efforts to re-enroll them, while VisionGreenwood pledged $25,000 to help lessen the financial burden.
“I cannot think of a more rewarding way to bring value to Greenwood County than by giving local individuals the opportunity to return to Lander University to complete their degrees,” said Kay Self, executive director for VisionGreenwood.
The mission of VisionGreenwood is centered on making Greenwood the best community in which to live, work and raise a family. To accomplish this, the organization provides leadership to enhance the quality of life in Greenwood through strategic long-term vision and collaborative community development initiatives, according to its website.
“Helping students prepare to enter our workforce sooner, rather than later, clearly makes a meaningful impact in our community – especially when they are prepared to fill workforce gaps in critical areas such as nursing and teaching,” Self added. “VisionGreenwood is proud to be associated with such educational initiatives and will continue to make this type of support a priority,” she said.
“We’re grateful that this money can go right back into our community to help local students,” said Greenwood Mayor Brandon Smith, who also serves as chair of the VisionGreenwood Board of Directors. “We’re excited about allowing them to complete their degrees, to get ahead in their workforce journey, and get that diploma.”
Some of the stop-out students identified were only a few courses shy of finishing their degree program, according to Dr. Todd Gambill, vice president for Enrollment and Access Management at Lander.
“This additional support from VisionGreenwood will give these students the financial boost they need to complete their coursework and earn their degree.”
About Lander University
Founded in 1872, Lander University is a public, co-educational teaching institution that serves approximately 4,100 students. Located in Greenwood, South Carolina, the University offers more than 90 areas of study in the liberal arts and sciences, with professional programs in STEM, education, business and nursing. To learn more about Lander, visit www.lander.edu.
About Vision Greenwood
VisionGreenwood is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with deep roots in the Greenwood community. Throughout the past 20 years, VisionGreenwood (formerly known as the Foundation for a Greater Greenwood County, Inc.) has invested over $2.9 million into the community by supporting collaborative community development initiatives that provide economic prosperity and enhance the growth and success of Greenwood. By intent and design, VisionGreenwood continues to be a community partner that is focused on Greenwood’s future, its economic growth and development, and its quality of life. Learn more at www.visiongreenwood.org.