TSU Receives $600,000 Scholarship Donation from Late Alumna’s Estate

Posted in: NEWS

by  on JULY 3, 2013


NASHVILLE (TSU NEWS SERVICE) – Tennessee State University graduate Vernice Marie Taylor Gray died nearly nine years ago, but not before makings plans to ensure that students in need get the opportunity for a quality education.

The estate of Vernice and her late husband, Elbert Gray Jr., has donated $600,000 for scholarships for students attending TSU.

The fund, established under the Elbert Gray Jr. and Vernice Taylor Gray Memorial Scholarship, will be used at the discretion of the University to fund two “financially disadvantaged” male and female students from Tennessee each year.

“This is certainly great news for Tennessee State University,” said President Glenda Glover. “We are pleased to announce this donation, which provides not only money but makes it possible for less fortunate students to get an education. We commend the Elbert Gray Jr. and Vernice Taylor Gray Trust for this scholarship program.”

Vernice, a native of Memphis, who moved to San Diego, Calif., with her parents in the early 1940s, met California native Elbert in 1948. The two were married four years later in 1952.

After attending San Diego State University for one year, Vernice transferred to TSU where in 1950 she graduated with a B.S degree in social administration and a minor in Spanish.  She worked at Convair and Juvenile Hall, and later went back to school and received a master’s degree from California Western University in 1965. She taught for about five years at St. Jude, Our Lady of Guadalupe and later with the San Diego City Schools, before retiring after 20 years because of poor health.

Vernice, a resident of Del Carro, Calif., died Jan. 12, 2004. Her husband, Elbert, died in 2012.

Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
3500 John A. Merritt Boulevard
Nashville, Tennessee 37209

About Tennessee State University

With nearly 9,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university and is a comprehensive, urban, coeducational, land-grant university offering 38 undergraduate, 22 graduate and seven doctoral programs. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to u.s. news and world report, and rated as one of the top Universities in the country by washington monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912 Tennessee State University celebrates 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu

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