Western Carolina University Chancellor David O. Belcher and wife Susan Brummell Belcher have pledged $1.23 million in gifts for the university’s ongoing efforts to provide increasing scholarship support to help deserving students in their pursuit of higher education.
The honor of announcing the pledge, which takes the form of a blend of cash donations and an estate gift, fell to Claire Lemke, a senior from Gastonia majoring in music who is among the recipients of WCU scholarships established by the Belchers. The announcement comes as the university is on the verge of rolling out the public phase of its Lead the Way comprehensive fundraising campaign, which will focus on scholarships.
“While I was one of the first recipients of a scholarship supported by the Belchers, I will be only one of hundreds to come,” said Lemke, speaking Thursday, Oct. 12, at an annual luncheon to recognize donors to WCU scholarship funds.
“Today, Chancellor David O. Belcher and his wife, Susan Brummell Belcher, are announcing a $1.23 million commitment in cash and estate gifts to WCU’s Lead the Way campaign. Yes, you heard that right – our chancellor and Mrs. Belcher are committing $1.23 million to Western Carolina University. This is the kind of transformational gift that will have lasting impact for generations to come,” said Lemke, the inaugural recipient of the Susan Brummell Belcher College of Fine and Performing Arts Endowed Scholarship.
Originally published Oct. 12, 2017.