Rowland R. Strong and Edith H. Strong Memorial Scholarship Organization Fund
Established in 2018 by the Board of Directors of the Rowland R. Strong & Edith H. Strong Memorial Scholarship Fund.
A private foundation, the Rowland R. Strong and Edith H. Strong Memorial Scholarship Fund, Inc. was created by a loving daughter, Miriam, in memory of her late parents. Miriam paid a final tribute to her parents through her estate upon her own passing in 2010 to ensure the educational future for Oxford students remains bright.
A chemist for Anaconda American Brass, and longtime Oxford resident, Miriam Strong had deep ties to the community. She served for 30 years on the Oxford Inland Wetlands Commission and volunteered her time with a number of local committees and organizations.
Miriam's will detailed the establishment of a private foundation to be overseen by a committee consisting of the Oxford Public Schools superintendent, highest level school principal, and head counselor, along with two Oxford residents.
Superintendent Ana Ortiz said the community relies on its two resident committee members to ensure that the process involves all Oxford students and not just those attending Oxford High School. "Miriam wanted to honor her parents and also recognized that not all families can afford the growing costs of higher education. For someone who really wants to attend a university but does not have the funds, this scholarship is perhaps the only way to make that dream come true."
Miriam's bequest was clear. The primary consideration in selecting recipients should be based on financial need and academic success. Given its immense responsibility as well as the detail involved in managing and administering this renewable scholarship program, the committee decided to involve the Valley Community Foundation (VCF).
"It has been a great opportunity to partner with VCF on the management and due diligence needed to administer a unique scholarship such as this," Ana said. "The staff follows up with students to make sure they remain academically eligible through the four-year renewable award."
"I knew VCF's reputation through their work on other scholarship funds and I knew Sharon well. Her support has been tremendous and, because she attends committee meetings and is very involved with the stewardship of this scholarship, she keeps us moving in the right direction as we develop policies and procedures," Ana added. "We awarded scholarships to two students in 2018 and our intent is to award two per year so eventually, each year eight students will receive support from this scholarship fund. As a result of Miriam Strong's generosity, we hope to demonstrate to our students that their education doesn't have to conclude with high school."
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