UNC School of Social Work has received an anonymous donation of $50,000 to support the school’s Hortense McClinton Legacy Scholarship Fund. The donation is one of the largest gifts received thus far for the scholarship fund, which was created in early 2022 to honor the work of social work trailblazer Hortense King McClinton.
A graduate of Howard University and the University of Pennsylvania and a former social work practitioner with the Durham County Department of Social Services and the Durham Veterans Administration Hospital, McClinton paved the way for other African American social workers in the state of North Carolina. In 1966, McClinton joined UNC’s School of Social Work, becoming the first Black faculty member at UNC-Chapel Hill. She retired in 1984 and continues to live in Silver Spring, Maryland.
Although the scholarship donor asked to remain anonymous, in a letter to the school’s development team, the donor noted that their gift is meant to help other students pursue careers in social work and to graduate with limited debt. Once endowed, the scholarship fund will support students who are first in their families to attain a graduate education and who exemplify McClinton’s pioneering spirit.