Darrell Allison’s life has been shaped by education. Growing up in Kannapolis, NC, his parents taught him the value of education from an early age, although neither of them obtained a college degree.
“My dad and my mom preached and ‘teached’ the importance getting a good education,” Allison said, reflecting on his family’s rich history of educational investment. “For my parents, a quality education was what was going to get their children to the next rung of the ladder.”
His parent’s investment paid off. Allison and his siblings earned academic full-ride scholarships to North Carolina Central University, and all went on to obtain graduate degrees.
“That is the powerful thing about those seeds my parents sowed,” Allison said. “We were all able to go on to get our graduate degrees as well. That’s because my parents taught us the value of education.”
Years later, Allison’s continuing his family’s legacy of leading through education, through both his professional career and the Darrell T. Allison Charitable Fund. The fund is a scholarship established to support students from his home county of Cabarrus who will attend his alma-mater, NCCU. He officially established the fund this year as he was sworn in to the University of North Carolina Board of Governors.
The scholarship fund will carry on his family’s legacy of investment in education for generations to come. In fact, the legacy scholarship at NCCU is named in both his and his father’s name, Thomas Allison, who died two years ago. “I’m honored to be able to support students pursuing higher education,” he said. “I know first-hand the value of a quality education, and I hope this scholarship allows entering first year NCCU students the same opportunity for years to come.”
When Allison first had the idea of creating a scholarship, he wasn’t sure where to start. “I did not have a clue where to go or how to do it,” he said. “I reached out to a friend who told me he highly recommended that I contact the North Carolina Community Foundation.”
Now, thanks to Allison’s vision of carrying on his family’s legacy, the Darrell T. Allison Charitable Fund is providing crucial financial support for Cabarrus County students attending NCCU.
“I cannot express how humble and appreciative I am of the work the North Carolina Community Foundation did to make this happen,” Allison said. “I could not have a better partner than the staff at the North Carolina Community Foundation.”
For Allison, the scholarship is all about giving back. “While I’m here, with whatever sphere of influence I have, I want to maximize it,” he said. “Not for me, but for individuals out there who need just a little help. Thankfully, this Foundation helped me launch this important personal mission.”
By Louis Duke