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College's largest benefactor awards $1.7 million

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

FREDERICK, Md.—Hood College's largest benefactor has awarded more than $1.7 million to the College.

Funds will added to the Hodson Scholarship Fund, which provides financial assistance to students; to establish and begin funding the new Hodson Research Institute for faculty and student research; to the fitness center sections of the new Hood Athletic Center, scheduled to be completed next year; and to the Hodson Trust Star Scholarship program, established three years ago for Maryland veterans who have served in the military in Iraq and Afghanistan. That scholarship pays for 100 percent of students’ costs not met by other scholarships or assistance.

In accepting the gift at an awards dinner recently held in Baltimore, Hood President Ron Volpe thanked the Hodson Trust board members for such a generous gift during these uncertain economic times.

The Hodson Trust, whose investment in talented students is a top priority, has awarded the College nearly $70 million since 1936. Hood has used this money, donated by the trust and the Hodson Scholarship Foundation, to support scholarships, endowed professorships, athletic programs, research grants and internships, and to build and upgrade campus facilities.

Throughout the College, the Hodson name is prevalent from scholarships for students and fellowships for faculty to a lecture series and named buildings. Some of the Hodson-named buildings and facilities are the Hodson Outdoor Theater, the Hodson Swimming Pool in the Gambrill Gymnasium, the Hodson Gallery in the Tatem Arts Center, the Hodson Science and Technology Center, the Beneficial-Hodson Library and Information Technology Center and the Hodson Auditorium in Rosenstock Hall.

Each year the Hodson grant is distributed among four institutions: Hood, Washington and St. John’s colleges and The Johns Hopkins University.

The trust was settled in 1920 by the family of Col. Clarence Hodson, who grew up in Maryland. Hodson believed that credit should be available to the average American, a revolutionary idea in 1914 when he founded the Beneficial Loan Society. Beneficial became one of the nation's most successful corporations.