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The University of Richmond Bonner Scholars Program is an initiative of the Corella and Bertram F. Bonner Foundation and the University of Richmond's Bonner Center for Civic Engagement to increase college access to undergraduate students through sustained civic engagement.

Corolla and Bertram F. Bonner Foundation

The Corolla and Bertram F. Bonner Foundation provides guidelines and funding for Bonner Scholars Programs in universities across the country. Now at 64 colleges and universities, Bonner Programs (Bonner Scholar Programs and Bonner Leaders Programs) provide scholarships and/or financial support (e.g., stipends, funding, Federal Work-Study) to students with financial need and who have a commitment to strengthening their communities through service. Seven of those institutions were awarded a $5 million endowment to carry out the Bonner Scholars Program. The University of Richmond is one of those endowed schools.

University of Richmond Bonner Scholars Program

The Bonner Scholars Program (BSP) serves students who have high financial need and/or a commitment to service. The Program is designed to enhance students’ overall education through participation in sustained community engagement throughout their undergraduate education. Through these structures, Bonner Scholars are given the opportunity to connect with other civically-engaged students, domestic and international nonprofits, and support staff at the university. The program aims to help students develop the skills and knowledge necessary to make their service meaningful and lasting.

Working in the Bonner Center for Civic Engagement (CCE) are full-time professional staff who direct and coordinate the BSP. CCE staff work with students to provide training and reflection opportunities, to ensure quality service placements, to serve as a liaison between the community organizations and the campus, and to prepare and support campus involvement in community endeavors.

Bonner Scholars emerge from their college experience with a greater understanding of communities and the challenges that face them, as well as the skills and commitment to be effective in community problem-solving efforts. Not surprisingly, most Bonner Scholars remain involved in service after graduation no matter what path they pursue professionally.