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Class Gift To Benefit Many U.Va. Organizations

May 16, 2000 -- At Valediction Exercises on Saturday, May 21, officers of the Class of 2000 at the University of Virginia will present to President John T. Casteen III a class gift of more than $37,000. It is designated to benefit about 170 organizations, including Madison House, the Office of African-American Affairs and the Women's Center.

This year's class gift was designed to allow students to give to whatever U.Va. organization, department, school or team that meant the most to them. A portion of each student's gift -- 20 percent -- will be donated to the Elizabeth Coggins Scholarship Fund. Coggins was a first-year student at U.Va. when she died in 1996.

CBS "60 Minutes" correspondent Andy Rooney will be the featured speaker at the Valedictory Exercises at 11 a.m. on the Lawn. In case of rain, the event will be held in University Hall.

The program also will include presentation of awards to students, faculty and other members of the University community to honor their contributions to U.Va.

Two fourth-year students and a long-time University administrator will receive the prestigious Algernon Sydney Sullivan awards in recognition of their excellence of character and service to humanity. They are Annette Gibbs, professor of education and director of the Center for the Study of Higher Education at the Curry School of Education, and students Leslie H. Williams Jr. of Alexandria and Pooja V. Sukhwani of Miami.

U.Va.'s secret Seven Society will announce winners of the Louis A. Onesty Memorial Scholar-Athlete Award and the James Earle Sargeant Award. The Sargeant award goes annually to an organization making exceptional efforts for the general benefit of the University.

Among other awards to be presented will be three class awards. The 2000 Class Award for Cultural Fluency will be given to Sonia Rosa Chang of Jamaica Plain, Mass. for understanding and appreciation of cultural and intellectual diversity. Sarah Elizabeth Crawford of Nashville will receive the Trustees' Award for Community Service for sincere and continued commitment to service. Presented for the first time, the 2000 Class Award for the Performing and Creative Arts will be given to Adam Jerome Popp of Earlysville for his commitment to the arts.

Other events on Saturday will include commissioning exercises for Army, Navy and Air Force officer candidates in Old Cabell Hall. The ceremony will feature an address by Gen. John N. Abrams of the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command.

The day's schedule also will include a reception hosted by President Casteen for graduates and their guests, a School of Nursing pinning ceremony on the Lawn, a Glee Club concert in Old Cabell Hall and a class of 2000 party Saturday night.

Contact: Katherine Jackson, (804) 924-3629

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: please contact the Office of University Relations at (804) 924-7116. Television reporters should contact the TV News Office at (804) 924-7550.
SOURCE: U.Va. News Services


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