The story of the Jefferson Scholars Foundation cannot be told without also telling the stories of the thousands of alumni and friends who have invested in our mission through private support.

Throughout the Foundation’s 40-year history of attracting outstanding leaders to the University of Virginia, donors have generously supported the growth of our mission. Hear their stories, and discover the enduring impact of private support.

A Transformational Gift 

In October 2019, the Foundation announced a $100 million gift from David and Jane Walentas, the largest gift in University of Virginia history devoted entirely to the endowment of scholarships, fellowships, and professorships.

The bulk of the gift — $75 million — is committed to scholarships and fellowships for first-generation students, with the remaining $25 million dedicated to fellowships and professorships through the Jefferson Scholars Foundation and Darden School of Business.

Contact Us

For more information and to learn more about how your gift can support the Foundation, please contact Pat Ingram, director of development.



The Jefferson Fellowship is the premier graduate fellowship offered at the University of Virginia. Based solely on merit, the Fellowship seeks to attract Ph.D. and M.B.A. candidates.

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The Jefferson Scholarship is the premier undergraduate scholarship at the University of Virginia. Scholars are selected through a rigorous selection process that is based on exceptional performance in the areas of leadership, scholarship, and citizenship.

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David and Jane Walentas

A transformational gift for UVA — $100 million to benefit first-generation students

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