The largest scholarship gift in the university's history will endow the A. James Clark Scholars Program and, starting this fall, provide ten students annually in the College of Engineering and the Myers-Lawson School of Construction with full-tuition scholarships. Recipients of the scholarships will be expected to pursue rigorous engineering and construction coursework, take at least two business classes, volunteer in community service activities, and participate in enrichment seminars and events with leaders in the field. As part of a campus-wide effort to increase access and double enrollment among underrepresented minorities by 2022, Virginia Tech will provide additional funding to ensure that Clark Scholars are able to attend the school tuition-free and have their room, board, and fees covered.
The late A. James Clark, who created the foundation formerly known as the Clark Charitable Foundation, was an engineer and founder of Clark Construction Group, which built the World Bank Headquarters, the National Museum for African American History and Culture, and the Virginia Tech Research Center – Arlington.
"Mr. Clark never forgot that his dream of becoming an engineer was made possible by a generous scholarship; he otherwise would not have been able to attend college," said Clark Foundation president and CEO Joe Del Guercio. "He believed in eliminating financial barriers so promising students could achieve their full potential. Virginia Tech's efforts to ensure access and affordability are in keeping with Mr. Clark's vision."