HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WHLT) – The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) president and his wife committed $300,000 to support the Leadership Scholarship Program.

The Joe and Meg Paul Leadership Scholarship Endowment will support the recruitment of highly engaged high school seniors to attend Southern Miss.

“An ACT score doesn’t tell the whole story of a student. Character, leadership, passion and grit can’t be quantified,” Dr. Paul said. “We want all students to come to Southern Miss with a purpose, to take the wheel and chart their path. These leadership scholars will positively impact and alter USM for the next generation. The perpetuity of an endowment is a game-changer; it will provide scholarships long after Meg and I are gone. That’s a cool legacy and larger than any two people.”

This gift combines with earlier generous commitments from Mollie Magee Van Devender, Chuck and Rita Scianna, and other funds to put the Leadership Scholarship Program. These funds will endow 200 leadership scholars in perpetuity.

For more information on supporting the USM Leadership Scholarship initiative, visit usmfoundation.com/leadershipscholarship.