Family and friends say William Claude “Bill” Waters knew the value of an education, and had a real desire to help people who couldn’t afford to attend college.
A 1947 graduate of West Virginia University, Waters died in July 2012 at age 93, leaving the University more than $730,000 for discretionary purposes. He had previously made gifts of $350,000 for student scholarships.
“Mr. Waters left a legacy of service to his country, as well as a personal and professional devotion to education,” said WVU President Jim Clements. “His gift of supporting students to become teachers is truly one that will touch generation after generation. His discretionary gift will also provide much needed support for the University’s work across our entire land-grant mission. We are very grateful for his gifts and honored to carry on his legacy through the lives that will be positively impacted by them.”
Waters grew up in western Monongalia County, graduating from Clay-Battelle High School. He served in the military during World War II, and upon his discharge, attended Fairmont State College where he earned his bachelor’s degree in education. He then attended WVU where he earned his master’s in education.
Waters was employed with the Monongalia County Board of Education, eventually becoming assistant superintendent of schools. He later worked for and retired from Merrill Publishing Company where he was a school book salesman.
The scholarships are for students enrolling in WVU’s teacher education program through the College of Education and Human Services. First choice will go to graduates from Clay-Battelle High School.
“The William C. Waters Scholarship encourages outstanding students to pursue a career as an educator. We thank him for his many years of support to the College of Education and Human Services. This is a fitting tribute to the memory of Bill Waters,” said Lynne Schrum, dean of the College.
The annual earnings from his $730,000 estate gift will be made available to the University to use at its discretion.
The donation from the estate was made to the WVU Foundation as part of A State of Minds: The Campaign for West Virginia’s University, a $750 million fundraising effort the Foundation is conducting on behalf of the University.
CONTACT: Bill Nevin, WVU Foundation
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