Thomas Costello, Jr.

Thomas Costello, Jr.

Photo courtesy of: Thomas Costello, Jr.

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OHIO alumnus supports Eastern Campus students through scholarship

After speaking with OHIO’s Eastern Campus Dean Richard Greenlee, alumnus Thomas Costello, Jr. began to understand the unique challenges and needs of Ohio’s Appalachian students. In support of this often forgotten population, Costello  established the Costello Scholarship for Appalachian Students, a fund that specifically benefits students enrolled at the Eastern Campus. 

Full-time, degree-seeking undergraduate students at the Eastern Campus who have a minimum grade point average of 2.75 are eligible for the scholarship. Scholarship awardees are recognized as Costello Appalachian Scholars. 

“I think Appalachia is forgotten about in our country. We often don’t realize that we have serious problems with extreme poverty in the region and around the country,” Costello said. “Access to education is very important for Appalachian students. I established this scholarship to enhance access to a higher education for Eastern Campus students and to better their lives and the lives of others into the future.” 

Costello is a 1975 graduate of University College with a bachelor’s degree in general studies. Costello later received his Juris Doctorate from the Thomas M. Cooley Law School in Michigan. 

Greenlee, who also currently serves as Ohio University Zanseville Campus’s Interim Dean, believes Costello Appalachian Scholars will thrive in the future. 

“Scholarships like the Costello Scholarship for Appalachian Students can open doors for these students and provide opportunities that might not be available to them without these specifically targeted scholarship funds,” Greenlee said. “This support can truly be the difference between earning a degree and living their dream, or watching that dream fade in the distance, never to be achieved. That would be a tragedy.  There are so many students in Appalachia who, with just a little help, can go on to achieve great things. These smaller gifts can be life changing for someone who lives on the margins from a financial perspective.”

Scholarships like this helps OHIO achieve one of its goals, which is to further the education of Appalachian students and provide an opportunity for them to enjoy a better life in their future careers, Greenlee said. 

“It’s all about impact. I encourage other alumni to give to OHIO’s The Promise Lives Campaign. Even small gifts can have a substantial impact. Scholarships help students receive an education, and that’s what helps them move forward.” 

The Costello Scholarship for Appalachian Students is part of OHIO’s The Promise Lives Campaign, which will raise $450 million by June, 2015 to support students, faculty, research and creative activity, community outreach and select facilities. To date, the Campaign has raised more than $419 million in support of these priorities. To make a gift to The Promise Lives Campaign, visit