A generous legacy gift made by a late West Virginia University alumnus is creating an endowed scholarship for students in the College of Human Resources and Education’s five-year teacher education program.

The $25,000 donation comes from the estate of Carol Diane Cook Elder, who earned her master’s degree from WVU in 1976. A Clarksburg native, Elder taught for more than 30 years in the Morgan County, W.Va., school system.

She suffered from a physical disability, but never let that stop her, said sister Jeanne Lanting.

“The greatest joy of Diane’s life was teaching,” Lanting said. “Her ability to overcome severe physical limitations enabled her to have a successful teaching career. She was one of the first kindergarten teachers hired by the state of West Virginia and was lovingly known by her students and others as ‘Miss Cook.’”

WVU’s nationally recognized Benedum Collaborative five-year teacher-education program allows students to earn a bachelor’s degree in a content area as well as a master’s in education.

“We appreciate Ms. Elder’s commitment to education and generous gift, which will help prepare future teachers meet the challenges of a 21st-century classroom,” said Diane Yendol-Hoppey, Collaborative director. “The students who receive the scholarship will carry on her mission of educating and nurturing generations of students.”

The endowment will provide scholarship awards for undergraduate or graduate students who are West Virginia residents. Recipients will be determined by officials in the College of Human Resources and Education in consultation with the WVU Office of Student Financial Aid and Scholarships. It is anticipated the first scholarship will be awarded for the 2011-2012 academic year. Additional details will be posted at http://hre.wvu.edu/audience/future_students in the near future.

The gift was made through the WVU Foundation, a private nonprofit corporation that generates and provides support for WVU.



CONTACT: Bill Nevin, WVU Foundation