The “Strong Scholars” Program for Initial Licensure Teacher Candidates

The “Strong Scholars” Program for Initial Licensure Teacher Candidates

Starting in 1928, the Hattie M. Strong Foundation (HMSF) has run what we believe to be one of the earliest and most successful student loan programs in the country. We have supported “young people of promise” in their pursuit of higher education across all fields of study in all regions of the country. Our loans always charged zero interest and offered flexible repayment schedules tied to the economic realities of a student’s career choice.

In 2009, the HMSF Board of Directors decided to confront a different kind of economic reality; the astonishingly high levels of debt that today’s college graduates must incur to complete their studies. Rather than make available yet another layer of debt, we decided to stop lending money and to simply give it away.

In alignment with our traditional focus on education, we have replaced our student loan program with a scholarship program aimed at college students enrolled in teacher-training programs. Specifically, the HMSF hopes to reduce financial pressure during the student-teaching semester, when a student’s ability to offset expenses with outside employment is curtailed by the rigor of full-time work in the classroom.

Program Operation, Application, and Selection Process

Funds for the $5,000 scholarships are distributed via partnership with twenty-four institutions, all located near Washington, D.C., that have demonstrated leadership in preparing outstanding classroom teachers. Application requirement and student selection will be determined by each institution’s scholarship committee in line with the following criteria in descending order of importance:

  • Undergraduate students who have exhibited outstanding success and enthusiasm in field experience prior to the final year of the program or graduate students whose life experiences prior to enrollment reveal the same traits
  • Students with demonstrated financial need
  • Students who have achieved a minimum 3.0 GPA in the two semesters prior to their final year


For students interested in learning more about applying for a Hattie M. Strong Foundation Strong Scholars Scholarship, please contact the following institutions:

The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C.

Jo Anna Norris, Director, Corporate and Foundation Relations
Office of University Development
106 Aquinas, Cardinal Station
Washington, D.C. 20064
(202) 319-6913

Gallaudet University, Washington, D.C.

Maribel Garate, Ph.D., Associate Professor and Chair
Department of Education, Gallaudet University
Fowler Hall, Office 304A
Washington, D.C. 20002
(202) 540-8536

George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia

Jeff Davis, Director of Clinical Practice
College of Education and Human Development
4400 University Drive, MS 6C13
Fairfax, Virginia 22030
(703) 993-5899

James Madison University, Harrisonburg, Virginia

Dr. Margaret “Maggie” Kyger, Assistant Dean
College of Education – MSC 6911
Harrisonburg, Virginia 22807
(540) 568-6317

Longwood University, Farmville, Virginia

Frances Reeve, Chair
Longwood University Teacher Preparation Scholarship Committee
201 High Street – 228 Hull
Farmville, Virginia 23909
(434) 395-2507

Norfolk State University, Norfolk, Virginia

Dr. Denise Littleton, Dean
School of Education
Bozeman – Room 137
Norfolk, Virginia 23504
(757) 823-8701

Old Dominion University, Norfolk, Virginia

Dr. Leigh L. Butler, Assistant Dean
Teacher Education Services
Education Building, Room 152
Norfolk, Virginia 23529
(757) 683-6448

Radford University, Radford, Virginia

Dr. Tamara Wallace, Assistant Dean
College of Education and Human Development
A-114 Peters Hall
PO Box 6960
Radford, Virginia 24142

Shenandoah University, Winchester, Virginia

Dr. Mary E. Bowser, Director of Professional Licensure
School of Education and Human Development
20 South Cameron Street, Bowman Building 111
Winchester, Virginia 22601
(540) 535-3575

University of Mary Washington, Fredericksburg, Virginia

Dr. Nina Mikhalevsky, Interim Dean
College of Education
1301 College Avenue
Fredericksburg, Virginia 22406
(540) 554-1295

Bowie State University, Bowie, Maryland

Dr. Joy Banks, Associate Dean for Research & Development
14000 Jericho Park Road, CLT 225
Bowie, Maryland 20716
(301) 860-3230

Frostburg State University, Frostburg, Maryland

Dr. Sally dhruva Stephenson – Associate Professor
Department of Educational Professions/Frampton Hall
101 Braddock Road
Frostburg, Maryland 21532
(301) 687-4433

Notre Dame of Maryland University, Baltimore, Maryland

Dr. Gary L. Thrift, Associate Professor and Chair
School of Education/Gibbons Hall – Room 225B
4701 N. Charles Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21210
(410) 532-5497

Salisbury University, Salisbury, Maryland

Brandy Terrill, Ed.D.
Chair, Seidel School of Education & Professional Studies Scholarships
1101 Camden Avenue
Salisbury, Maryland 21801
(410) 677-5460

Towson University, Towson, Maryland

Dr. Jeffrey Kenton, Assistant Dean
College of Education-Hawkins Hall, Room 304D
8000 York Road
Towson, Maryland 21252
(410) 704-4226

University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, Maryland

Marie Lilly, Associate Director, Foundation Relations
Office of Institutional Advancement
1000 Hilltop Circle, Admin 812
Baltimore, Maryland 21250
(410) 455-5707

East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina

Elizabeth P. Hecker, Administrative Associate
Development and Communications
College of Education
243 Speight Building – Mail Stop 504
Greenville, North Carolina 27858
(252) 737-4799

Elon University, Elon, North Carolina

Kurt R. Moore, Director of Foundation Relations
200A Lindner Hall, Campus Box 2345
Elon, North Carolina 27244
(336) 278-5657

Fayetteville State University, Fayetteville, North Carolina

Dr. Marion Gillis-Olion, Dean
School of Education
1200 Murchison Road
Fayetteville, North Carolina 28301
(910) 672-1265

North Carolina Agricultural & Technology State University, Greensboro, North Carolina

Dr. Karen D. Guy, Director, Center for Internships & Study Abroad
School of Education, 123 Proctor Hall
1601 East Market Street
Greensboro, North Carolina 27411
(336) 334-7663

Salem College, Salem, North Carolina

Dr. Sheryl Long, Director of Teacher Education
601 South Church Street
Main Hall, First Floor
Winston-Salem, North Carolina 27101
(336) 721-2774

University of North Carolina – Pembroke, Pembroke, North Carolina

Dr. Karen Stanley, Interim Dean
School of Education
Education Center, Room 113
PO Box 1510
Pembroke, North Carolina 23872
(910) 521-6528

University of North Carolina – Wilmington, Wilmington, North Carolina

Dr. Carol McNulty, Associate Dean for Academic and Student Affairs
Watson College of Education
601 S. College Road
Wilmington, North Carolina 28403
(910) 962-3361

Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, North Carolina

Dr. Dale Carpenter, Dean and Professor
College of Education & Allied Professions
204 Killian
Cullowhee, North Carolina 28723
(828) 227-7311