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WVICU Awarded Grant from AEP Foundation

Charleston, W.Va.: The West Virginia Independent Colleges & Universities (WVICU) was awarded a two-year grant from the American Electric Power Foundation (AEP Foundation). This $40,000 gift to the WVICU Circle of Vision Scholarship Fund (COV) will be used to provide scholarship support to students in good academic standing demonstrating a financial need. Many of our students are first in their families to attend college, so receiving a scholarship not only helps to ease their financial burden but also is an investment in the future workforce here in the Mountain State.

The COV Scholarship Fund was started in 1997 and provides West Virginia students with an opportunity to attend one of our eight private colleges or universities. Since then, nearly 3,500 students have been awarded scholarships totaling more than $7 million. The WVICU depends on corporations, foundations, and individual donors to help make college more affordable for our students. During the 2020-2021 academic year, the COV Scholarship Fund assisted 115 students with scholarship support.

Appalachian Bible College, University of Charleston and Wheeling University have been given a portion of the grant awarded from the AEP Foundation. Five students have received assistance at these three institutions and more will be helped in the upcoming academic year. Ben Beakes, the Executive Director of WVICU said, “Scholarships for our West Virginia students are a crucial tool for us to recruit and retain our best and brightest. Enriching the lives of students and increasing their opportunities of success is our focus, and the grant awarded to WVICU from the AEP Foundation is helping to make that possible.”

The WVICU would like to thank the AEP Foundation for their partnership and helping to advance the value of private higher education in West Virginia.


The West Virginia Independent Colleges and Universities is made up of Alderson Broaddus University, Appalachian Bible College, Bethany College, Davis & Elkins College, Ohio Valley University, University of Charleston, West Virginia Wesleyan College, and Wheeling University.

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