FIU Business Now
Supporting the B Student: Scholarship Helps Those Who Aren't Afraid to Question Authority

Supporting the B Student: Scholarship Helps Those Who "Aren't Afraid to Question Authority"

R. Van Chesnutt (BBA '78) believes in giving back, and has chosen FIU Business for a generous six-figure scholarship endowment.

But this scholarship comes with a twist. It's focused not on those top grade point earners, but on first-generation, "B" average business students.

The Chesnutt Scholarship, funded through the donor's bequest, will provide support for undergraduate business students who have a GPA between 2.45 and 3.8, and are among the first generation in their families to attend college. It is designed to assist and encourage retention of "B" students; those who would not be perceived by the donor as "too serious" or as "afraid to question authority."

Why these students? Because they are just like he was in college. Chesnutt attended FIU at night while working during the day as a production planner at American Hospital Supply Corp. "It takes a lot longer to get your degree that way," he said. "I wasn't an 'A' student because I was working full time."

Chesnutt would go on to enjoy a successful 20-year career with the Boeing Company before founding two companies of his own and moving into consulting. He had been mulling over creating an FIU scholarship for years before finally making the commitment with the Chesnutt Scholarship.

"Whatever I have done – including attending FIU – has led me to the next thing, or enabled me to do it," he said. "What I learned at FIU helped me transition to do what I did at Boeing, and what I did at Boeing helped move me into my consulting activities."