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UMD Law establishes scholarship to honor Rep. Elijah Cummings

FILE - In this Aug. 7, 2019, file photo, Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., speaks during a luncheon at the National Press Club in Washington. U.S. Rep. Cummings has died from complications of longtime health challenges, his office said in a statement on Oct. 17, 2019. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

FILE – In this Aug. 7, 2019, file photo, Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., speaks during a luncheon at the National Press Club in Washington. U.S. Rep. Cummings has died from complications of longtime health challenges, his office said in a statement on Oct. 17, 2019. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

The University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law has established a scholarship to honor the late U.S. Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, who graduated from the school in 1976.

The Cummings Scholarship has an initial endowment of $50,000, which was made available by the Maryland Carey Law Board of Visitors and will be awarded to one student at a time, according to Shara Boonshaft, senior director of philanthropy at the school.

Cummings died on Oct. 17 at age 68. He was a longstanding member of the Board of Visitors, according to a news release.

The student recipient will receive funding from the Cummings Scholarship endowment, plus additional funding as needed from the school’s general scholarship fund, Boonshaft said.

When deciding to whom to award the scholarship, the school will consider students’ interest in public service, record of academic excellence and demonstrated financial need, the school said.

“We lost a great man whose contributions to the law school, Baltimore, the State of Maryland, and the nation are immeasurable,” Board of Visitors Chair Robert J. Kim said in the release. “The Cummings Scholarship honors Elijah by continuing his legacy of empowering students to become legal leaders, using their education to do good in the world.”

If the scholarship’s endowment grows, the school could consider awarding the scholarship to more than one student at a time, Boonshaft said.

The law school will also honor Cummings’ memory by awarding him its Lifetime Achievement Award at an alumni honors banquet in April.

Maya Rockeymoore Cummings, the late congressman’s widow, said in the release that her family is “delighted” the school decided to honor her husband in this way.

“This scholarship is consistent with Elijah’s passionate belief that financial challenges should not prevent promising students from receiving a quality education,” she said.

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