First-Generation Students Inspire Scholarship Gift From von Gremps

Jim and Susan von Gremp
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Jim and Susan von Gremp

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Jim and Susan von Gremp of Rogers have a passion for helping first-generation students. The Rogers couple is contributing $50,000 to create an Advance Arkansas scholarship at the University of Arkansas, so more students from Arkansas have the financial means to earn a college degree from the state’s flagship. Their gift counts toward Campaign Arkansas, the $1.25 billion capital campaign aimed at increasing academic opportunity at the U of A.

“We believe that assisting those with limited resources – especially first-generation college students – can help change the lives of family members for generations to come,” said Jim von Gremp, who is also a first-generation college graduate.

The Jim and Susan von Gremp Advance Arkansas Endowed Scholarship will support new, returning or transfer students from Arkansas who exhibit financial need, records of academic success and a strong desire to complete their degree at the University of Arkansas. Von Gremp says the idea of an endowment appealed to them because it will allow the financial assistance to stay in place for generations to come.

“I believe this scholarship, combined with possibly other scholarships, personal initiative and the assistance of professors and staff at the U of A, can make achieving a college degree a reality,” von Gremp said. “Plus, graduates who have received some type of assistance – financial or otherwise – tend to give back to others in the future, thereby continuing the cycle. This has been demonstrated over and over again in various ways, including generous donations by so many others to the U of A.”

Mark Power, vice chancellor for advancement, said the Advance Arkansas initiative continues to be a priority for the university through the remainder of Campaign Arkansas and beyond.

“I have known Jim and Susan for many years and know how truly generous they are,” Power said. “Helping first-generation students is a cause close to their hearts, because they believe education is the key to future success. We are very fortunate to count them as benefactors of the university and are grateful they are supporting Advance Arkansas with their gift. Thanks to them, more students from Arkansas will be given the opportunity to have a life-changing education.”

Jim von Gremp holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Missouri and a Master of Business Administration from the Sam M. Walton College of Business at the U of A. He is a member of the Campaign Arkansas Steering Committee and a past member of the UA Foundation Board and the Board of Trustees. He and his wife, who also graduated from the University of Missouri, are members of the Arkansas Alumni Association and Chancellor’s Society. They are counted as Thoroughreds for their consecutive giving to the U of A and are included in the Towers of Old Main, a giving society for the university’s most generous benefactors.

In 2005, the couple established the James A. and Susan F. von Gremp Honors College Fellowship to attract highly qualified students to the Honors College.

About Campaign Arkansas: Campaign Arkansas is the ongoing capital campaign for the University of Arkansas to raise private gift support for the university’s academic mission and other key priorities. The campaign’s goal is to raise $1.25 billion to support academic and need-based scholarships, technology enhancements, new and renovated facilities, undergraduate, graduate and faculty research, study abroad opportunities and other innovative programs. The University of Arkansas provides an internationally competitive education for undergraduate and graduate students in a wide spectrum of disciplines as it works to fulfill its public land-grant mission to serve Arkansas and beyond as a partner, resource and catalyst.

About the University of Arkansas: The University of Arkansas provides an internationally competitive education for undergraduate and graduate students in more than 200 academic programs. The university contributes new knowledge, economic development, basic and applied research, and creative activity while also providing service to academic and professional disciplines. The Carnegie Foundation classifies the University of Arkansas among fewer than 3% of colleges and universities in America that have the highest level of research activity. U.S. News & World Report ranks the University of Arkansas among its top American public research universities. Founded in 1871, the University of Arkansas comprises 10 colleges and schools and maintains a low student-to-faculty ratio that promotes personal attention and close mentoring.


Jennifer Holland, director of development communications
University Relations


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