The Lu Lingzi Memorial Scholarship Fund, named after the BU graduate student who was killed in the April 15 Boston Marathon bombings, recently reached its $1 million goal this month, officials confirmed Tuesday.
BU trustee Kenneth Feld established the scholarship fund just days after the attack on the Boston Marathon that claimed Lingzi’s life, said BU spokesman Colin Riley. The scholarship fund reached its goal through donations from BU alumni across the world and through support from Lingzi’s friends and family.
“Certainly, we are appreciative of the trustees establishing it and taking the initiative to establish it [the scholarship fund] in her honor with respect to the family,” Riley said. “I think people responded incredibly to the scholarship.”
Riley said the scholarship fund received worldwide support from over a thousand donors from two-dozen different countries. He said the extended support from the BU community and friends and family of Lingzi was unanticipated.
“There is a lot of appreciation and gratitude, and it certainly shows the commitment of Boston University trustees to students, friends, faculty, staff and alumni who are willing to contribute in her name,” Riley said.
According to the Lu Lingzi Scholarship Fund website, Lingzi, a graduate student studying statistics, was a beloved member of the BU community. BU Trustees established this scholarship fund based on the wishes of the Lingzi family after their daughter died.
“An optimist with a powerful work ethic, she had just passed the first part of the master’s comprehensive exam in statistics — an accomplishment that gave her great satisfaction,” a statement on the website read. “Along with her friends and family, we grieve at her passing.”
All members of the extended BU family are invited to contribute to the Lu Lingzi Scholarship fund, according to the website. Contributions of any amount are both accepted and appreciated.
The Lu Lingzi Scholarship fund will endow two scholarships for BU graduate students with one beginning in the fall 2014 semester, said Director of Advancement Communications Jeff Cruikshank.
The dean of each graduate school or college may nominate one student each year to receive this scholarship, Cruikshank said. Selection will be based on the nominated student’s academic achievement and potential for success.
“Each [scholarship] will provide an annual stipend and full tuition for up to two years,” Cruikshank said in an email. “International students enrolled in a full-time master’s degree program will be eligible, with preference given to those from China.”
Feld, chairman of The Campaign for Boston University and initiator of the Lu Lingzi Scholarship Fund, was among one of the fund’s most notable donors, Cruikshank said.
Cruikshank said according to Willis Wang, vice president and associate provost from global programs, the Lingzi family is grateful for the support the scholarship fund has received. Wang was the intermediary for the Lingzi family when they came to BU for their late daughter’s memorial service in April.
“The family [Lingzi] is proud and appreciative of the scholarship,” Cruikshank said. “For BU, the scholarship symbolizes a strong community coming together in the wake of a terrible tragedy.”