Bluefield College has awarded its first ever Elbert F. and Sheridan L. Williams Scholarship, and the recipient is Princeton, West Virginia’s Amanda Grimmett.
The Williams Endowed Scholarship Fund for Ministry and Missions was established at Bluefield College in 2008 by Sheridan (Sherry) Williams of Max Meadows, Virginia, in order to preserve her late husband’s legacy of giving and his love for Christian education.
A native of Rural Retreat, Virginia, whose professional career included service as a police officer, homicide detective, trucking company manager, and biomedical technician, Elbert (Junior) Williams was well known during his lifetime for contributions to his community and church.
“He liked to help people,” Mrs. Williams said about her husband. “He took time to do things for people. He didn’t mind the time it took, if it meant he would make them feel better. He was very tenderhearted and caring. He drew people to him.”
As a tribute to his generosity and his passion for learning, Mrs. Williams created the BC scholarship in his name as a means to help students who need financial assistance to attend college, particularly students wishing to fulfill a call to ministry.
“We felt like Bluefield College was doing what it was supposed to be doing — helping people fulfill their calling,” Mrs. Williams said about the decision to create the scholarship at Bluefield. “Junior used to say that people may be called to the ministry, but if they can’t get an education to fulfill that calling, they may not be able to do what God wants them to do.”
Getting that needed assistance as the first recipient of the Williams Scholarship is Grimmett, a third-year Christian studies major at BC, who attended University High School in Spokane, Washington, before moving to Princeton to complete her secondary education at Princeton Senior High. In addition to being a Williams Scholar, Grimmett is an Academic Achievement Scholar and an Essay Scholar Competition winner at Bluefield.
“Education is so important, but it has to be accessible,” Mrs. Williams said. “Some children today, particularly in this area, are not afforded the opportunity for higher education. Through this scholarship, they can get an education and fulfill a calling.”
Candidates for the Williams Scholarship must have a sensed call to full-time Christian ministry or missions, including youth, music, drama or pastoral ministries. Recipients, like Grimmett, are eligible for the awards throughout their college years.
A native of Baltimore, Maryland, Mrs. Williams has worked in real estate, the Social Security Administration, a neurosurgeon’s office, and the Maryland Motor Truck Association. She moved to southwest Virginia with her husband in 1996, where together they became active members of the community. Today, Mrs. Williams volunteers at local hospitals and food pantries and has been an active member of the Appalachian Conference of the Pentecostal Holiness Church, the Wilderness Road Pentecostal Holiness Church, and the Max Meadows Pentecostal Holiness Church.