Texas Wesleyan University has been awarded $1.24 million for need-based scholarships by the state of Texas.
Travis County Associate Probate Judge Dan Prashner awarded Texas Wesleyan the former endowment funds of Lon Morris College, and ordered that the funds are used to provide need-based scholarships to first-generation college students from northeast Texas.
"Texas Wesleyan takes great pride in our support of first-generation college students," President Frederick G. Slabach said. "We are excited to reach out to deserving students in northeast Texas with more scholarship opportunities, and look forward to opening our doors to more stellar students from the area."
The Lon Morris College Charitable Trust is the remaining endowment funds from Lon Morris College in Jacksonville, Texas, which closed in 2012. The Texas Attorney General was responsible for determining distribution of the funds, in a manner that would ensure the continued support of students in need from northeast Texas.
Like Texas Wesleyan, Lon Morris was a small, liberal arts college affiliated with the United Methodist Church, with a history of serving first-generation college students.
"When Lon Morris closed, we took in many of their former students and have worked hard to support them as they work toward a college degree," Patti Gearhart Turner, chief of staff and general counsel, said. "We are so grateful to the court and state to give us the opportunity to grow our support of students from northeast Texas."
Currently, 33 percent of Texas Wesleyan's undergraduate students are first-generation college students.
Texas Wesleyan undergraduate students received $16.5 million in scholarships, institutional grants and financial aid (federal and state grants and student loans) last semester.
Texas Wesleyan is the most affordable private university in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, and is consistently ranked by U.S. News & World Report in the top tier of universities in the West.