Alumnus's Planned Giving Helps Students Thrive
Clay Coleman holds many fond memories of his beloved "Uncle Bubba" - from the stories he told to the "fierce loyalty" he held for his alma mater, Virginia Commonwealth University.
Coleman's uncle, E.L. "Buddy" Derring (B.S.'53/B; M.H.A.'58/AHP), who graduated from VCU predecessor Richmond Professional Institute, put that loyalty to good use in 1997 by establishing annual scholarships in both the School of Allied Health Professions and the School of Business.
"He loved his time in the business school at Richmond Professional Institute," Coleman said. "After spending time in the Army, he had the opportunity to get his master's in health administration at the School of Allied Health Professions and eventually became the CEO at Prince William Hospital in Manassas, Va. He had a phenomenal career there and credits VCU for his success."
Before his death in 2011, Derring put the wheels in motion to further benefit his alma mater by including VCU in his estate plan. Through a $20,000 bequest to each school, Derring transformed his annual scholarships into endowed awards. Now the Elwyn L. Derring Scholarship in the Department of Health Administration in the School of Allied Health Professions and the E.L. Derring Scholarship in Business will benefit full-time students with financial needs in perpetuity.
"The scholarship is quite meaningful because E.L. really stayed in touch with us and knew what the master's program was all about," said Cecil B. Drain, Ph.D., dean of VCU's School of Allied Health Professions. "He made a financial contribution to help preserve the excellence that he himself enjoyed at our school. That's what it's all about."
published August 2012
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