The Virginia College Fund becomes the Commonwealth Alliance for Rural Colleges

The Virginia College Fund becomes the Commonwealth Alliance for Rural Colleges, adds Appalachian School of Law to membership.

The board of The Virginia College Fund voted to change the organization's name to the Commonwealth Alliance for Rural Colleges at their annual meeting in Richmond. A new logo was also introduced. The organization has supported rural access institutions by providing scholarships since 1965.

"Our mission is to provide our member institutions the resources to ensure students have access to an affordable, value-based education that prepares them for success in a global economy," said Chairman Adam Peachee. "Our support benefits students from rural communities, many of whom are the first in their families to attend college. We feel our new name more accurately reflects the institutions and people we serve."

Members include Averett UniversityBluefield University, Eastern Mennonite University, and Ferrum College. At the annual meeting, the board unanimously voted to admit Appalachian School of Law as a member.

Located in Grundy, The Appalachian School of Law (ASL) is an ABA-approved private law school offering a three-year Juris Doctor degree. Founded in 1994, ASL emphasizes professional responsibility and alternative dispute resolution in its curriculum and requires students to complete 25 hours of community service per semester to graduate. Each student is also required to complete an externship before graduation.

Keith Faulkner, President of Appalachian School of Law, said, “Appalachian School of Law is truly honored to be the newest member of the Commonwealth Alliance for Rural Colleges and to be among its esteemed member institutions. It has never been more imperative for the rising generation to have practical and specialized education in the pursuit of their callings, and it has never been more important to reign in the costs of their education. It is this urgent and important challenge that the CARC helps meet for the students of its member institutions. We look forward to participating in this noble aim.”

Redball Advertising in Roanoke assisted with the rebranding and the logo was designed by Michael Craighead of Nero Digital Design.

The Commonwealth Alliance for Rural Colleges cultivates donors and board members committed to expanding access to higher education. The Alliance’s support comes from individuals, corporations, foundations, and trusts. Every dollar raised goes directly to the member schools for student support and is distributed according to an equitable funding formula based on enrollment. With the competitive financial landscape for higher education and the average package of financial assistance for member schools exceeding $22,000 per student, the Alliance acts as a critical link between donors wishing to support higher education for rural students and institutions. Since its inception, the Alliance has contributed over $26,000,000 toward educational attainment for generations of Virginians.

Learn more about the organization at