Two graduates of Indiana University of Pennsylvania are continuing a family tradition of helping others through a gift to the Foundation for IUP to benefit diverse students in the IUP College of Fine Arts.

Joshua Hillard, a 2001 music education graduate, an advisor to the John and Delores Hillard Family Foundation housed in the Central Pennsylvania Community Foundation, and his wife, Jamie Anna Hillard, a 2000 music education graduate, have designated $25,000 from the fund to endow the John and Delores Hillard Scholarship for Diversity in Fine Arts at IUP. John and Delores Hillard, who established the fund with the Central Pennsylvania Community Foundation, are Josh's grandparents.

Both Hillards are currently working in the Altoona Area School District—Joshua as an instrumental music teacher and Jamie as a vocal music teacher.

The scholarship is named in honor of Joshua's grandparents; John Hillard was a local flute player and classical music lover who played and sang at local churches and community events.

“IUP was a centering moment for us to transition to becoming adults,” he said. “We were both very fortunate to be in the Music Department and surrounded by key figures who shaped our lives.”

“Every year, my wife and I, working with my aunts, decide where our giving will make the most impact. My grandparents had a long tradition of caring for the needs of the community,” Joshua said. “We looked at the needs at IUP, and this scholarship seemed to be an opportunity to make the greatest possible impact.”

The John and Delores Hillard Scholarship for Diversity in Fine Arts is designed to support incoming, undergraduate, freshman students enrolled full-time in the IUP College of Fine Arts. Preference will be given to diverse students.

Joshua is a member of the IUP College of Fine Arts Advancement Council.

Nia GoldenAn additional personal gift from Joshua and Jamie Hillard has allowed the scholarship to be awarded in 2020. The first recipient of the John and Delores Hillard Scholarship for Diversity in Fine Arts is Nia Golden, a theater major from Lansdale.

“I am so thankful for this scholarship because it aids me in continuing to pursue my love for and education in acting,” Golden said. The daughter of Darryl and Cheryl Golden, she is a 2019 graduate of North Penn High School. She was selected for the Promising Scholar program and received the Love of Arts Scholarship. She is a member of Sigma Alpha Lambda National Leadership and Honors organization, Alpha Sigma Tau Sorority, and participated in the applied theater ensemble simulation program at IUP.

“Our alumni are engaged and incredibly loyal to IUP,” Curt Scheib, dean of the IUP College of Fine Arts, said. “Through their generosity, Josh and Jaimie demonstrate that they care deeply for this university and for our current and future students. Josh is also a valued member of our college's Advancement Council, and we appreciate his commitment and service. This scholarship will enhance our ongoing work of making study and opportunities in the arts at IUP available to a talented and diverse group of students. It is a life-changing gift, and we are very appreciative of the Hillard's ongoing support.”

The John and Delores Hillard Scholarship for Diversity in Fine Arts at IUP joins a number of endowed scholarships designed to help students of color to fund their education at IUP.

The gift to establish the Hillard Scholarship is part of IUP's $75-million Imagine Unlimited Campaign, which will enable IUP to step forward as a national leader by transforming the student experience through scholarships, program enhancements, and new and modernized facilities.