Lydia C. Roberts Graduate and Traveling Fellowships

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The Lydia C. Roberts Graduate and Traveling Fellowships were established in 1920 and limited to students "of the Caucasian race". Needless to say, this doesn't go down as well as it (somehow) did in 1920, but it has taken the university until 2013 to begin the process of amending the fellowship's racial restriction, despite the fact that the NAACP started to call for changing it in 1949 (at the time, then-Provost and later University President Grayson Kirk defended the fellowship, saying "we do not feel we are justified in depriving some of our students of the benefits of restricted grants simply because they are not available to everyone.")

Reportedly, some recipients were not even ever made aware of the racial requirement that allowed them to obtain the fellowship.

Lydia C. Chamberlain, the donor who contributed a then-fortune of $509,000 to establish the fund, also imposed some other crazy restrictions - recipients had to have been born in Iowa and could not be studying law, medicine, dentistry, veterinary surgery or theology, for whatever reason.

When first established, the fund paid $691, then a year's full tuition. The last time it was awarded, in 1997, it paid out $22,000, then only half a year's tuition. The fund is currently worth $840,000 (it earns income - $26,000 in 2011, for example). The university has admitted it cannot award the scholarship anymore because it falls afoul of discrimination laws, and claims it "overlooked" the clause when awarding the fellowship in the years before it discontinued its disbursement.

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