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Marshall University’s Southern Coalfields alumni chapter has made an impact on Marshall for several years. This past year, they were recognized for their lifetime giving and welcomed into the Marshall University Foundation’s President’s Circle, which recognizes those who have given $100,000 to $249,999 to help the university rise.

“We are always excited when a group of alumni come together to keep their love of Marshall alive,” said Dr. Ron Area, chief executive officer of the Marshall University Foundation. “When they rise to set an example of giving back at this level, we are truly moved by their encouragement and support for our students.”

One of the chapter’s main areas of support is through their scholarship, the Southern Coalfields Scholarship Fund, which supports full-time, undergraduate, incoming freshmen who are residents of Raleigh, Summers, Fayette or Wyoming counties in West Virginia and demonstrate financial need per Marshall’s Office of Student Financial Assistance.

In 2020, the chapter committed to raising another $25,000 over the next five years so that the scholarship can provide additional support to students.

Tim Cyrus, vice president of the Southern Coalfields chapter, said his degree from Marshall opened many opportunities for him and his family.

“Helping Marshall rise is helping my friends and neighbors, along with my state, rise up to become more than we currently are. Giving back to the university and the future Marshall graduates through fundraising and scholarships is very important as we move into the future,” Cyrus said.

Many chapter members are inspired to give because they see the direct impact Marshall has on southern West Virginia, as well as the entire state.

“Marshall is an integral part of the glue that holds this state together. I am very proud of the fact that U.S. News & World Report ranked Marshall in the top tier of our nation’s universities two years in a row. The growth in our business and engineering programs is so impressive. The School of Medicine and College of Health Professions continue to grow, expand and support our state in all disciplines of medicine, providing everything from rural health care providers to athletic trainers for West Virginia and beyond,” said chapter member Becky Cyrus. “There are so very many exciting things happening at Marshall right now with the new aviation degree, pharmacy school expansion and sports programs. How could you not be excited to support these things?”

The Southern Coalfields alumni chapter has two upcoming events to raise funds for their scholarship. “Thunder in the Alley” will be held on Sunday, April 25, at Pinheads Bowling Center in Oak Hill, West Virginia, from 1 to 6 p.m. The chapter’s 31st annual Big Green golf outing, “Golf for Jane Ann,” will be held Monday, May 24, at Grandview Country Club in Beaver, West Virginia. Registration will be open from 10  to 11:30 a.m. with a shotgun start at noon.

“It is rewarding to help Marshall rise and see the vast opportunities available to students. As Marshall rises, so do the opportunities, which will help keep our students in state,” said club secretary Amanda Ashley.

For information on joining the Southern Coalfields alumni chapter or any of their events, please visit their Facebook page @ Marshall University Southern Coalfields Alumni and Big Green Club, or contact chapter president Doug Leeber at 304-266-8766.