The new Leeolou Alumni Center, decked out with purple
and gold banners and spreads of delicious food, was the gateway for
77 entering freshmen and their parents at the August Legacy Scholarship
Luncheon. The plush center overlooks the newer residence halls east
of I-81, and it was a new and welcome sight for Katie Taliaferro and
her parents — though her parents are very familiar with the JMU
grounds on the other side of I-81.
Linda and Rich Taliaferro, both 1975 graduates, and
their daughter, Katie, mingled with other freshmen legacies and JMU
President Linwood H. Rose at the Leeolou center.
Though most of the legacies had heard JMU stories from
their parents, Katie had a leg up on her classmates. She’s a fourth
generation legacy. Her maternal grandmother, Jean Early, graduated from
Madison’s secretarial program; and her great-grandmother, Beulah
Showalter Early, attended the Normal School. “Katie has cousins
and aunts that graduated from JMU, too,” says mom, Linda.
“We’re so honored for JMU to recognize
Katie with this scholarship,” adds dad, Rich.
Legacy Scholarships are available each year because
of another JMU legacy — Purple Pride. Alumni, who take their school
pride on the road each day via a JMU Virginia state license plate, raised
$19,500 for 19 Legacy Scholarships. This fall, 17 students received
$1,000 each and two received $1,250.
For every JMU license plate purchased through the Virginia
Division of Motor Vehicles, $15 of the $25 specialty plate fee goes
to JMU for scholarships. “The license plate program is helpful
to the alumni association on so many levels,” says Justin Thompson,
director of alumni relations. “It’s a great way to display
JMU pride and provide much needed scholarship support to legacy students.”
To learn more about the Virginia JMU license plate scholarship
program, visit www.jmu.edu/alumni/plate. To order a plate visit the
Virginia Division of Motor Vehicles online at www.dmv.state.va.us.