Couple Recognizes Parents through CSM Scholarship

Full-time Students with Full-Time Parenting Responsibilities to Benefit from Patty Schwier, Norma LaFleur Scholarship Fund

Giving back and strengthening the bonds of family and community are just two of the reasons a local couple has developed a scholarship for parents studying at the College of Southern Maryland.

The $1,500 Patty Schwier and Norma LaFleur Scholarship Fund seeks to reward academic excellence to a full-time CSM student who is a parent seeking higher education and attending CSM’s Prince Frederick Campus.

The couple, who wishes to remain anonymous, developed the Patty Schwier and Norma LaFleur Scholarship Fund as a means to contribute locally and address the needs of non-traditional college students, specifically those who are parents. “So many students are struggling, not so much with their class material, but with the demands of their lives outside of the classroom,” said the donors.

“The donors said in setting up this fund that their hope is that this scholarship will relieve a little stress for the students who receive this and help them to strengthen their family bonds,” said Michelle Goodwin, CSM’s vice president of advancement.

 “These students have often left the workforce or have significantly cut their hours in order to take on the demands of their program but they still have all of the responsibilities of their home life – taking care of children, making dinner, etc. We thought if there is even one thing we can do to make life a little easier on these students, we should,” the couple said.

The scholarship is named after the donors’ mothers who both worked in the field of education and stressed its importance in their children’s lives. Patricia Schwier taught high school chemistry and Norma La Fleur worked as a nursing consultant and presenter.

Applicants for the Patty Schwier and Norma LaFleur Scholarship Fund must be a new or current student at CSM, attending the Prince Frederick Campus, and a parent with at least one dependent child. Current students need to possess a GPA of 3.0 to qualify. This is a one-year scholarship of $1,500 per semester if the student maintains a GPA of 3.0 or higher for the duration of the scholarship.

To apply students need to submit an application via CSM’s Scholarship Finder and a maximum 250-word essay detailing their family commitments and the sacrifices necessary to successfully complete higher education. Recipients will be selected by a scholarship committee made up of CSM faculty and donors.

To apply for this or other CSM scholarships visit or call 301-934-7531, 301-870-2309, 240-725-5499 or 443-550-6199, Ext. 7531. For information on giving opportunities at CSM call 301-934-7636 or 301-870-2309, Ext. 7636 or visit .