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Beth Stefanik
Director of Communications
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St. Anne's-Belfield School Senior Awarded Emily Couric Leadership Scholarship 

Charlottesville, Va., May 2, 2016 – On April 29 2016, St. Anne’s-Belfield School senior Olivia Vande Woude was awarded the 2016 Emily Couric Leadership Scholarship, an annual honor acknowledging young women from Charlottesville or Albemarle County who are active in leadership roles within the community.

“Olivia exhibits sincere dedication to her endeavors and to others,” said Peter Quagliaroli, director of college counseling at the School. 

“She volunteers at her church and library, and has interned at Tupelo Press Writing Center for the past two years. Impressively, she also founded and runs Ties for Hope, a fundraising organization designed to empower impoverished women around the world through sewing education.” 

As this year’s scholarship winner, Vande Woude will receive $30,000 which she will use towards attending the College of William & Mary. Vande Woude plans to study in areas of social justice, specifically women’s issues or the acceptance of cultural differences. Ultimately, she hopes to work in international affairs or law. 

“From learning about the scholarship, I became acquainted with the life of the late Senator Emily Couric and her ideals, as well as her approach to life,” says Vande Woude, of the two-term Virginia State Senator.

“I feel so proud to be associated with a woman with such foresight, who created this legacy and was able to give young women who exemplify her values the opportunity to be recognized and grow. Through her tenacity for her values in her advocacy for issues of health and education, she set an example that I aspire to emulate.”

Couric passed away in 2001 from pancreatic cancer. While undergoing treatment for the disease, she represented the 25th District and was elected to serve as the General Chair of the Democratic Party in Virginia. Prior to her election to the General Assembly in 1995, Couric served on the Charlottesville School Board and a variety of community boards.  The Emily Couric Leadership Forum now honors Couric’s contributions to the community by encouraging and inspiring women to become active citizens and community leaders. 

The Emily Couric Leadership Scholarship has been given since 2001, with $566,500 awarded to 123 young women. Nominations are received from each public and private high school in Charlottesville and Albemarle. 


St. Anne’s-Belfield School is a co-educational preschool through grade 12 day school of more than 900 students and 120 faculty and staff, with a boarding program in grades 9 - 12. More than 20 countries are represented in the student body, with 38% of families receiving financial aid. More information may be found at

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