A $4 million challenge grant from John Griffin (Com ’85) will help establish a scholarship program to benefit incoming undergraduate students with outstanding academics and significant financial need. The grant is conditional upon a match from other donors, with the goal of raising a total of $8 million. Griffin is a current member of the UVA Board of Visitors.
His gift will both launch the new “Blue Ridge Scholarships” and fuel growth of UVA’s endowment for financial aid. Pending matching gifts, the first $1 million of the grant will benefit incoming students to UVA’s Class of 2018.
Griffin’s challenge grant also bolsters UVA’s overall commitment to the long-term success and sustainability of its nationally recognized aid program, AccessUVa. The next $3 million of the gift is a challenge grant designed to help grow the financial aid endowment, a top University priority.
The gift comes at a time when state and federal funding sources are declining or flat. The University currently provides more financial aid to more students than at any time in its history. Its commitment to student financial aid has increased from $11 million a decade ago to more than $40 million in the current academic year. UVA stands virtually alone as a public university practicing “need-blind admission”—offering admission to students with no consideration of their financial situations.