This is a second generous endowment gift from Elon Trustee Louis DeJoy and his wife Dr. Aldona Woś of Greensboro, North Carolina, to assist students with high financial need from Title I schools in Guilford County.
Elon Trustee Louis DeJoy and his wife, Dr. Aldona Woś, of Greensboro, North Carolina, have made a second generous endowment gift to assist students with high financial need from Title I schools in Guilford County. Their gift is part of the $250 million Elon LEADS Campaign.
The DeJoy-Woś Odyssey Scholars Endowment was established in 2018 following an initial lead gift from DeJoy and Woś. The couple is passionate about making an Elon education possible for highly motivated students attending Title I schools in Guilford County—students who would be unable to enroll at Elon without significant financial assistance.
The couple’s additional commitment adds four scholarships to the DeJoy-Woś Endowment, bringing the total number of scholarships to 16. The first two DeJoy-Woś Scholars are enrolled in Elon’s Class of 2025 and are part of the university’s successful Odyssey Program. This highly selective program serves outstanding students with significant financial need, including many who are the first in their families to attend college. Deepening scholarship funding is the top priority of the $250 million Elon LEADS Campaign.
Working with a team from the Louis DeJoy and Aldona Woś Family Foundation, DeJoy has been leading a comprehensive effort to identify students from Title I high schools and help prepare them to attend Elon and benefit from the university’s high-impact experiential learning model. He said he wants these students to be successful students and later successful professionals who give back to their communities.
“I can see how well the partnership and process are working, and I want to expand our efforts in this program,” DeJoy said. “I am confident that we will have transformative impacts on the future success of these young adults.”
“We are grateful to the DeJoy-Woś family for their deep belief in the power of an Elon education,” said Elon President Connie Ledoux Book. “Through the power of philanthropy, Louis and Aldona are increasing access to an Elon education that we know transforms lives, families and communities.”
The couple are among Elon’s most generous benefactors. They are founding donors of Elon’s School of Law in Greensboro and have made lead gifts to support scholarships and the Numen Lumen Pavilion, Elon’s multifaith center. In 2009, the couple established the Honorable Aldona Z. Woś, M.D., and Louis DeJoy Scholarship for International Study, which helps students with financial need pursue full-semester international study opportunities.
The Odyssey Scholarship Program
The Odyssey Program is part of Elon’s Center for Access and Success. In addition to annual tuition assistance, each of the scholarships in the Odyssey Program includes a stipend for books and supplies, and a one-time, global study grant to be used for an approved study abroad or Study USA program.
Throughout the four-year program, students take advantage of intellectually demanding courses while furthering their personal and professional development. Students participate in a first-year summer orientation, attend annual retreats and monthly meetings with their peers, are involved in one-on-one academic and career planning meetings, and maintain an academic and leadership portfolio. Students in the Odyssey Program are consistently among Elon’s top-performing students.
“I cannot be more impressed with the Odyssey Program, and I applaud Elon’s success with the program,” DeJoy said. “It’s a very powerful and attractive opportunity for a donor, and the need is certainly there.”
“The generosity of Louis DeJoy and Aldona Woś helps ensure that Elon continues to attract and provide life-changing opportunities to traditionally underrepresented students, particularly those who are first-generation, students of color and students from low-income households,” said Jean Rattigan-Rohr, vice president for access and success at Elon. “We are thankful for this investment in the future.”
About the Donors
DeJoy served as chairman and CEO of New Breed Logistics, a leading U.S. provider of contract logistics solutions, from 1983 to 2014. His company merged with XPO Logistics in 2014. DeJoy then served as CEO of XPO’s North American supply chain division, retiring in 2015 before being appointed to a strategic role on the company’s board for three years.
In June 2020, DeJoy was named the 75th Postmaster General of the U.S. Postal Service. He also serves as president of LDJ Global Strategies, a strategic real estate investment and consulting company based in Greensboro, and serves a number of civic, business, institutional and educational organizations. DeJoy has been a member of Elon’s Board of Trustees since 2007 and was recognized in 2017 with Elon’s Medal for Entrepreneurial Leadership. He also serves on the Board of Trustees for the PGA Wyndham Championship and the Piedmont Triad Partnership.
Woś, a retired physician, served as U.S. Ambassador to Estonia under President George W. Bush from 2004 to 2006 and served as Secretary of the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services from 2013 to 2015. In 2017, Woś was appointed vice chair of the President’s Commission on White House Fellowships.
Her numerous board memberships include The Institute for World Politics, the Council of American Ambassadors, the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, and the Duke Law Board of Visitors. Woś has also served on the boards of the United Way of Greater Greensboro, the United States Holocaust Memorial Council and the Board of Governors for the University of North Carolina. In 2015, Woś received North Carolina’s highest honor, the Order of the Long Leaf Pine.
About the Elon LEADS Campaign
With a $250 million goal, Elon LEADS is the largest campaign in the university’s history and will support four main funding priorities: scholarships for graduates the world needs, access to engaged learning opportunities such as study abroad, research and internships, support for faculty and staff mentors who matter and Elon’s iconic campus. As of March 15, donors had contributed $242 million toward the goal.
Every gift to the university—including annual, endowment, capital, estate and other planned gifts—for any designation counts as a gift to the campaign, which will support students and strengthen Elon for generations to come. Visit www.elonleads.com to learn how you can make an impact with your gift.