Generous Donors Create Lasting Scholarship Opportunities for FAU’s Veteran Students

From its earliest days, Florida Atlantic has welcomed students who have sought opportunity through education. It is with great pride that FAU has become known as a place where determined and talented students can achieve their dreams. A critical key to making quality education more widely accessible is student scholarships.

Military families sacrifice a great deal to serve this country. Some university donors have made gifts to thank veterans for their service in a very meaningful and tangible way. This past May, some of these donors were formally recognized at the 2023 Horizon Society luncheon, which pays tribute to those who have generously engaged in planned giving activities.

Florida Atlantic received a transformational gift of more than $3.3 million from the estate of James Thomas Farrell. The estate gift created an endowed scholarship fund that will provide scholarship support each year in perpetuity for honorably discharged veterans enrolled at FAU. Mr. Farrell’s family, Christopher and Kate Farrell, worked with Florida Atlantic to make this gift a reality for our students.

Proud FAU alum, Geoff Thomas ‘70, together with his wife Janice Thomas ’96, sought to pay it forward to their alma mater and established an endowed scholarship fund for FAU veterans. It is the Thomas’ hope that their gift will fund the difference between what the G.I. Bill funds and what veterans need to cover their expenses while studying at FAU.

The university is designated as both a Military Friendly® School and a Military Spouse Friendly® School. FAU’s Office of Military and Veterans Student Success Center serves more than 1,000 military and veteran students, which includes dependents eligible for military and veteran educational benefits. It promotes activities and programs intended to enhance military and veteran student success while creating a platform for veterans to engage the community.

On average, 250 to 300 veterans study at FAU each semester, and many experience financial hardships with earning their degrees due to familial responsibilities and other expenses that may hinder degree completion. Providing scholarship funding to such talented and deserving FAU owls is one of the most important ways to bolster student achievements and enable them to create waves of generational change.

By supporting FAU’s current and future veteran students, you are helping these students access a world-class education that prepares them to serve as tomorrow’s leaders. To learn more about how Florida Atlantic is committed to providing scholarships that propel access to higher education, as well as how Transcend Tomorrow: The Campaign for Florida Atlantic University is working to protect our environment and address the growing need to train more health care workers, visit

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