Landis couple sets up scholarship at Catawba College

SALISBURY, NC (WBTV) - Walt '49 and Hilda '50 Ramseur of Landis wanted to give their three adult daughters something they didn't have, but something that would be significant and meaningful to each of them.  They decided to establish a scholarship in honor of their daughters at Catawba College, the alma mater of this family.

The Pamela, Sandra, and Julie Ramseur Endowed Scholarship honors the Ramseurs' daughters – Pamela McDaniel '76 of Durham, Sandra Hicks '80 of Rincon, Ga., and Julie Lewis '84 of Charlotte.  Preference for the scholarship will be given to students majoring in math, education, or political science.

Walt says he used to tell his daughters that he knew where they were going to college.  "You're going to the school where you get the best scholarship," he recalls saying.  That college ended up being Catawba, with all three daughters receiving scholarship assistance to attend, and with Sandra and Julie selected as recipients of First Family Scholarships.

The daughters, each of whom was expected to be a boy and each of whom was going to bear the family name, Stephen Dodson Ramseur, might have been born female, but they certainly were not disappointments.  Not only did the daughters give their parents six grandchildren collectively, they each turned out to be good citizens who have enriched their respective communities through their careers and service.

Sandra, or Sandy as she prefers to be called, followed in her mother's footsteps and became a teacher.  She's in her 31st year of teaching first grade students and was this year named Teacher of the Year at her school, South Effingham Elementary School in Rincon, Ga.  Sandy's husband, Al, is also a Catawba alumnus from the Class of 1981.  The couple has two adult sons, Brent and Billy.

Pamela, or Pam as she prefers to be called, was also a teacher for a time.  She taught math and computer science and also worked in the information technology field as a programmer.  She and husband Mark have two adult sons, Matthew and Madison.

Julie serves as an attorney in the Mecklenburg County Public Defender's Office in Charlotte.  She earned her law degree from UNC Chapel Hill after graduating from Catawba.  She and husband Greg also have two children, Ethan and Meredith.

Catawba College has played a central generational role in the Ramseurs' lives.  Hilda's parents, Lester G. and Cleo Lentz Troxell, were Catawba graduates from the Class of 1923, and Hilda and Walt met while they were students at the college.

Walt worked for Cannon Mills Company for over 40 years until he retired as manager of data processing in 1990.  Hilda was a longtime teacher at Landis Elementary School until her retirement in 1991.  Both have long been recognized as two of the College's strongest supporters, active in the Chiefs Club, the Alumni Association, the Parents Association and the Board of Visitors.  The two supported the Shuford Stadium renovation in the early 2000s, with Walt being one of four volunteers who lead a grassroots fund-raising effort in the Rowan-Salisbury community for the project.  The two also were significant contributors to the Campaign for Catawba in the early 2000s, an effort that raised almost $60 million for the college.  In the Hayes Field House on campus, the Walt Ramseur Athletic Office is named in honor of Walt for his support for that project.

In recognition of the importance of scholarships available to deserving students, Walt and Hilda had previously established the Walter R. and Hilda Troxell Ramseur Endowed Scholarship at the college and through their gifts grew that scholarship to the First Family level.

The couple was honored as recipients of the Catawba Alumni Association's Distinguished Service Award in 1981.  Walt was honored by the college in 1995 as the recipient of the O.B. Michael Award for his many contributions to his alma mater and society.