Barton College in Wilson, North Carolina, has announced a $7.8 million gift from the estate of Emerson Clarence Winstead in support of student financial aid.
The largest gift in the school's history will support educational opportunities for Barton students in perpetuity, with preference given to students from North Carolina. Nearly all Barton students receive some form of financial aid, including the 85 percent of the student population that hails from North Carolina.
A longtime supporter of the college, Winstead established the Laura B. and Emerson C. Winstead Endowed Chair for flute in the college’s Wilson Symphony Orchestra in memory of his wife, who died in 2006. He also gifted the college with two Steinway pianos. Last month, Winstead's estate provided a similar gift to Sewanee – the University of the South.
"I am awed and humbled by the magnitude of this gift as well as E.C. Winstead's vision to enhance educational opportunities at Barton," said Douglas N. Searcy, the school's president. "I am grateful for the momentum it will provide to boldly meet the needs of our students and region."