Family of Virginia Pekor Culpepper Endows COEHP Scholarship at CSU

Virginia CulpepperCOLUMBUS, Ga. — The family of Virginia Pekor Culpepper, a longtime Columbus educator, has endowed a scholarship in her name through Columbus State University’s College of Education and Health Professions.

The scholarship is designated for junior and senior education majors at CSU with a financial need based on information provided to the university’s Financial Aid office. Students must graduate from a public school system to be eligible, with preference given to those from the Muscogee County School District.

“CSU, through its education program, produces a significant number of teachers, and we wanted to do something in her honor to help encourage these future educators,” said son Bill Culpepper of Acworth, who earned an MBA from Columbus State in 1984. “As a lifetime resident of Columbus, mother knew the value to the community of having a quality local education institution. The university is also significant to our family as several of us are CSU alumni.”

The scholarship is named in memory of Virginia Culpepper, who died in Columbus at age 86 last April 13. A Columbus High School graduate, she attended Sweet Briar College in Virginia and graduated from the University of Georgia in 1948 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism.

Mrs. Culpepper began her education career as a first-grade teacher at Columbus’ Johnson Elementary. After she married, she returned to education in 1957, teaching second-grade, mostly at Wynnton Elementary. A mother of two, Mrs. Culpepper balanced her family life and teaching with successful pursuit of a master’s degree and a six-year certificate in education from UGA during summers.

Starting in 1973, she commuted to Georgia State University in the evenings to complete a second master’s to become a school psychometrist. In that role, she then spent 12 years testing and evaluating students until her retirement in 1987.

During retirement, she became more active as a volunteer, including work as a docent at the Columbus Museum, leading schoolchildren on museum tours.

Scholarships may be renewed by seniors who received the scholarship as a junior, as long as the student maintains the minimum GPA requirement for scholarship recipients. Scholarship recipients will be known as Virginia Pekor Culpepper Scholars.

"Through the generosity and gifts like this endowed scholarship from the Culpepper family, Columbus State University continues to grow into one of the nation's first-choice institutions of higher learning,” CSU President Tim Mescon said. “We are thankful for their support as it will impact many students to come."

For more information on CSU’s other scholarships in the College of Education and Health Professions, visit http://ColumbusState.edu/finaid/scholarships/list.php?type=8&ST=Education.

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