Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Scholarship Series Part 1: Vivian Bourgeois

 Vivian F. Bourgeois

August 17, 1914October 27, 1993

Vivian Florence Bourgeois was born in New Orleans in 1914, the last of six children of Paul Bourgeois and M. Alzina Spahr. At age two she was stricken with polio-myelitis. She bore the resulting physical deformity throughout her life. She was educated in the public schools of New Orleans including the New Orleans Normal School. She later received two degrees from Tulane University. Additional graduate work was done when she received a summer scholarship to study Remedial Reading at Boston College. Another summer scholarship was granted to study Intercultural Relations at the University of Chicago. A third scholarship for a semester enabled her to extend her graduate work in Research at Tulane. Special short term courses at LSU and Xavier University completed her formal college education.
At age eighteen she began her career as a Kindergarten teacher. In the following eleven years she taught at four additional elementary school levels including grades one and eight. She was then named Supervisor of Educational Measurement for the elementary schools. This was later extended to include all public high schools in the city. In 1975 she retired after forty-two years of service with the Orleans Parish School Board. In 1983 she as cited for work she accomplished for ACE International. In 1984 she received the state Achievement Award from The Delta Kappa Gamma Society. In 1993 the Delta Kappa Gamma Society International named a $2000 annual Special Projects Award in her honor.
 Miss Bourgeois died in her home on Wednesday, October 27, 1993. She left a bequest of $48,363.93 to Epsilon State Organization of the Delta Kappa Gamma Society International. A Committee was appointed in the fall of 1995 to prepare guidelines for the establishment of the Vivian F. Bourgeois Special Stipend. The guidelines were approved at the 1996 Epsilon State Convention. The stipend will encourage Epsilon State members to become better classroom teachers/professors by affording tem the opportunity to present at or attend regional, national, and international conferences/conventions or workshops/seminars within their subject matter disciplines. Awards, provided from interest accrued, cannot exceed $500 per recipient and shall be used to defray expenses of registration, room costs, and travel.

In July, 1995, Epsilon State received $43,363.93 from the Estate of Miss Vivian Florence Bourgeois, a Past Epsilon State President who died on October 27, 1993. The Vivian F. Bourgeois Special Study Commmittee was apponted by President Mary Ann Beasley to develop guidelines for use of the bequest. The guidelines were approved at the 1996 Epsilon State Convention.
The goals of the Vivian F. Bourgeois Special Stipend Committee are:
  • To encourage active educators to improve classroom skills by attending conferences and conventions pertaining to their subject disciplines and conducted by significant educational organizations other then The Delta Kappa Gamma Society International;
  • To provide financial assistance (not to exceed $500) to approved attendees to defray expenses of registration, room costs, and travel.
Committee members: Virgie Dronet, Lisa Taylor, Barbara Jobe, Lynnette Wise, Frances Wilson.

Application and guidelines may be obtained from the Epsilon State website.

Special thanks to Virgie Dronet for providing information for the scholarship series.

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