The Elva Ossian Smith Presidential Endowed Scholarship was established to honor and recognize Elva Smith, mother of Dean, Earl L. Smith, for her unwavering support of higher education. Throughout her life she sacrificed so that others could have a chance to pursue their educational dreams. Although she graduated at the top of her high school class, Elva did not have an opportunity to attend college. Instead she worked to support her brothers while they pursued college degrees. Later when her children were ready for college, she took an outside job to ensure that there would be sufficient funds for their tuition and books; Elva always insi£ted that her children would attend college, there were no other options. In this respect, Elva was a very effective motivator; both of her children eventually earned multiple doctoral degrees.