Nine members of the incoming Class of 2024 have been selected as Stamps Scholars by Virginia Tech’s Honors College.

Hailing from four states, they will be the first cohort to arrive since the program was dramatically expanded thanks to the generous support of an Atlanta-based foundation created by philanthropists E. Roe Stamps IV and Penny Stamps.

The foundation has supported Virginia Tech Honors College students since 2014, but last year increased its level of support to provide full-ride scholarships to as many as 10 incoming students, twice as many as were eligible in previous years.

Virginia Tech is one of nearly 40 Stamps Scholars partner schools across the United States. Scholars are chosen for the strong leadership potential, academic merit, and exceptional character.

The Stamps Scholars program dates back to 2006, when Roe and Penny Stamps created merit scholarships for undergraduates at their respective alma maters, Georgia Tech and the University of Michigan. Since then, the Stamps Scholars community has grown into a nationwide network of colleges and universities, with more than 2,300 current and alumni scholars.

“Stamps Scholars enrich our student body and serve as role models for their colleagues,” said Paul Knox, founding dean of the Honors College and a University Distinguished Professor at Virginia Tech.

Stamps Scholars have a distinguished track record of leadership within the university’s student body. Scholars have served as CEO for the SEED student investing team, been Ring Dance chair, won national competitions in mathematics, been nominated for national fellowships, and led students to promote cultural understanding and environmental advocacy.

“The Honors College is delighted to have our newest class of Stamps Scholars entering in the fall 2020 semester,” said Russell Shrader, the Honors College director of admissions and scholarships. “We have students from Virginia, Maryland, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania, with a wide range of majors and interests. The diversity and varied goals of the new class will provide an enriching environment for everyone.”

Incoming scholars and their fields of study are:

  • Zachary Abdo (biology), of Sterling, Virginia.
  • Garrett Asper (aerospace engineering), of Boiling Springs, Pennsylvania.
  • Mia Hagood (computer science), of Ashburn, Virginia.
  • Cameron Hogge (aeronautical engineering), of Midlothian, Virginia.
  • Olivia Kastor (architecture), of Statesville, North Carolina.
  • Trevor Niles (geosciences), of Stafford, Virginia.
  • Teresa Thomas (computer science), of Clarksburg, Maryland.
  • Waverly VanGundy (biology), of Virginia Beach, Virginia.
  • Rachael Wennermark (English), of Ashburn, Virginia.

The Stamps Scholars program covers all expenses for four years of undergraduate study and includes an enrichment fund that scholars can use for their academic and professional development. Other benefits include participation in a national day of service, access to a growing network of scholars and alumni, and opportunities to attend biennial conventions, where scholars are able to network with one another and learn from recognized leaders.

“The Stamps Scholarship is a long-term investment in these young people,” said Christina McIntyre, the Honors College director of professional development and national and international scholarships. “The dividends are realized in the greater society over time, and in a wide variety of ways.”