Self-Starter Elyse Ruth (CLA ’71) Creates Scholarship for Non-Traditional Students
By Sara Curnow Wilson
When Elyse Ruth was a junior at Temple in 1969, she studied abroad at the London School of Economics. Because no financial aid was available, she had to find alternate means of funding her studies, including a job in a pub.
Her wages? One pound. Or $2.40.
"Not per hour. That was the entire shift. One pound," she laughs.
Ruth looks back on her time abroad as one of the most exciting parts of her education. She still remembers receiving her letter of admission from the London School of Economics.
"When I got the letter saying I'd been accepted, oh, I was flying," she says.
Thanks to Ruth, future Temple students will have a similar feeling. Through a gift in her will, she plans to create an endowed scholarship, covering not just one year but all tuition costs for selected students.
Ruth could have used such help herself. Because she did not start at Temple straight from high school, she missed out on some scholarship opportunities. She was determined to attend college full-time however, and took loans and held jobs to pay her own way.
When setting up her scholarship, it was important to Ruth that she help people like her who had been away from school for a significant amount of time.
"I really want to help the student who had a significant gap in time between high school and college, or needed to take a break from college for an extended period," Ruth says. "If it will get them to select Temple rather than someplace else, that's terrific."
Ideally, she explains, her legacy gift will not only help others receive a college degree, but also put them in the position to donate as well.
"The more people I can help, the better. I hope that it will sort of cascade and everybody who I help will in turn want to help Temple."