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Washington and Lee University

Washington and Lee University

Parents Support the Professors Behind Williams Investment Society

from The Bridge: Fall 2009 issue

Not many 18- to 22-year-olds have the opportunity to manage a million dollars in investments. But that's exactly what 38 talented W&L students do. They are members of the Williams Investment Society (WIS), a student organization that manages a segment of W&L's endowment in equity securities.

Larry and Sally Lawrence, parents of Peter '08, Ben '10 and Christina '12, were amazed at how this extracurricular club blended classroom knowledge and experiential learning. "WIS was, from a career point of view, a really transformative experience for our son Peter," said Larry Lawrence.

Recognizing that faculty advisors play a big role in this experience, the Lawrences endowed the Lawrence Term Professorship, which rotates among faculty in the Williams School and provides an extra level of support for the departments that make WIS possible. The first Lawrence Professor is Scott Hoover, who teaches many WIS students in his finance courses and has served as a faculty advisor to WIS.

The Lawrences are using their gift to challenge other parents and alumni to endow a second term professorship in the Williams School. The Lawrences' challenge and the Lenfest Challenge for Faculty Support present a rare opportunity for donors to make a larger than usual impact on Washington and Lee through their giving. To learn more about the Lawrence Challenge, contact Stephen Snead, Regional Director of Development at or (540) 458-8274.