Walter ‘Doc’ Hurley Scholarship Fund for Greater Hartford at the Hartford Foundation Celebrates 10th Anniversary
In 2014, a generous group of local residents made contributions to start the Walter “Doc” Hurley Scholarship Fund for Greater Hartford, making it possible to offer a scholarship to an eligible student from the region. The fund was created to continue the proud legacy of the late Walter “Doc” Hurley who dedicated his life to helping young people achieve their goals.
Doc Hurley was a vibrant force as a dedicated educator and coach who created pathways for local high school students to gain access to higher education through his basketball tournament that raised funds for his scholarship program. As the community foundation of the Hartford region, the Hartford Foundation is honored to continue Mr. Hurley’s legacy, and grateful for the outpouring of support from local residents to continue to provide scholarships for Greater Hartford students.
Woodlyn Joachim was the first student to receive the Doc Hurley Scholarship in 2014. Growing up in Hartford, Woodlyn graduated from Weaver High School/Journalism and Media Academy and enrolled in the University of Connecticut. After earning her Bachelor of Science degree in Molecular and Cell Biology in 2018, Woodlyn worked in a variety of research roles at Community Health Center, UConn and Hartford Hospital while she earned master’s in public health at UConn. Upon completing her studies at UConn, Woodlyn was accepted into the University of New England School of Dentistry in Maine where she is about to complete her courses to earn her Doctor of Dental Medicine (D.M.D).
"The Doc Hurley Scholarship was among the various scholarships that helped secure my dreams of becoming the first college graduate in my family,” Joachim said. “Thanks to the generous donors who supported my journey, I found relief from the burden of tuition and a profound affirmation that others saw my potential and believed in me!"
Greer Davis was the second recipient of the Doc Hurley Scholarship. A former resident of Bloomfield, Greer graduated from Loomis Chafee in 2015 and attended Tufts University where she earned her degree in film and media studies. As a senior, Greer served as an intern for ICM Partners in Los Angeles and was hired as a full-time employee after graduation in 2019. After working her way up from the mailroom, Greer was promoted to serve as the executive assistant to ICM’s head of its Music Division, Rob Gibbs. Today, Greer serves as Concerts Coordinator at United Talent Agency and is responsible for booking, planning, and organizing concerts for the agency’s extensive roster of musical acts.
“This scholarship meant a lot to both me and my family as Doc Hurley was a very close friend of my grandfather,” said Davis. “I am grateful for the Hartford Foundation and all of the generous donors who have supported the Doc Hurley Scholarship for allowing his legacy of advocating for youth to live on, and financially helping students like me pursue our dreams.”
Applications for this year’s Doc Hurley scholarship are being accepted until March 14, the closing date for most Hartford Foundation scholarships. The candidates must be a 2024 high school graduate with financial need and will be eligible to receive an annual scholarship award of $3,000 per year, for up to four years. In addition to the standard criteria, the Walter “Doc” Hurley Scholarship Fund for Greater Hartford will include specific standards that reflect Mr. Hurley’s work:
- Participation in a wide variety of scholastic and other extracurricular activities.
- Recommendation of high school vice principal, guidance counselor or community leaders.
- Assessment of student’s writing ability conveyed in an essay entitled “Why I Deserve the Doc Hurley Scholarship Fund for Greater Hartford Award.”
Over the past 79 years, the Hartford Foundation has provided thousands of scholarships to students throughout Greater Hartford. In 2023, 494 students, including approximately 200 students renewing their scholarships, are receiving a total of $1.5 million in scholarships. The Hartford Foundation for Public Giving Scholarship Program has awarded nearly $32 million since 1945.
Hartford Foundation Scholarship Program recipients include traditional-aged students, as well as adult learners at four-year and two-year colleges, and local community colleges, graduate, and medical schools. Many of the scholarships for traditional-aged students are renewable, enabling students the opportunity to receive significant support for each of their years in college.
The Foundation has also made significant investments to provide wraparound support services to students including access to mentoring, basic human needs, and transportation, all to increase persistence and completion of a post-secondary degree or credentialing.
For students interested in applying for a scholarship at the Hartford Foundation go to the Hartford Foundation Scholarship Program website. The application deadline for most scholarships this year is March 14.
The Hartford Foundation for Public Giving is the community foundation for Hartford and 28 surrounding towns. Through partnerships, the Foundation seeks to strengthen communities in Greater Hartford by putting philanthropy in action to dismantle structural racism and achieve equity in social and economic mobility. Made possible by the gifts of generous individuals, families and organizations, the Foundation has awarded grants of more than $948 million since its founding in 1925. For more information, visit www.hfpg.org or call 860-548-1888.