May 19, 2024

UMW Receives $2.5 Million Gift for Professorships

The University of Mary Washington has received a $2.5 million gift to establish a series of endowed professorships and faculty awards in various departments within the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Business and the College of Education. The bequest is from the estate of Shirley Van Epps Waple, an alumna from the Class of 1952.

“Named, endowed professorships enable the University to attract, retain and recognize outstanding faculty who are truly experts in their fields,” said President Richard V. Hurley. “This generous gift from Mrs. Waple’s estate is greatly appreciated, and we will honor her legacy by ensuring that UMW professors continue to inspire students to think critically, engage meaningfully and communicate effectively.”

Vice President for Advancement and University Relations Torre Meringolo said each new professorship will be named for Shirley Van Epps Waple.

This is one of the largest single gifts to support academics at the University. Its timing is ideal in advancing President Hurley’s vision for UMW to be among the premier public liberal arts and sciences universities in the nation.”

Originally from Troy, N.Y., Waple majored in psychology at Mary Washington. After graduation in 1952, she returned to New York. Working with her husband Harry, who predeceased her, she co-founded, operated and served as president of the Professional Adjustment Bureau, Inc. of Troy. She was active in numerous professional associations and served in various capacities within several arts and historical organizations. Waple relocated to Richmond in 1999, and she died in September 2010.

A longtime supporter of the University, Waple previously endowed a scholarship for students with financial need, and she made a gift to name an office in the Jepson Alumni Executive Center.

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