vcu school of nursing students

Nursing students in a VCU School of Nursing classroom. Photo: Tyler Trumbo, MCV Foundation

Nursing Alumna’s Mentor Inspires Charitable Gift Annuity

valerie hunt
Valerie Hunt, Ph.D., RN, was inspired by a college professor to attend VCU School of Nursing for her masters and today, she and her husband are giving back to the school she credits as having prepared her for her nursing career of 50 years. Photo courtesy of Valerie Hunt.

During senior year at Boston College, Valerie Hunt, Ph.D., RN, applied and was accepted to three graduate nursing programs. Her options? Stay in her native New England, move across the country to California, or head south to Virginia.

Dr. Hunt’s final decision, she says, was largely due to the positive influence of one professor from her junior year who had attended the VCU School of Nursing and spoke very highly of her experience at the school.

“It started with that professor. She made a big impression on me, so VCU was the one I chose,” said Dr. Hunt, a nurse of 50 years.

I wanted to support the VCU School of Nursing because it will continue to provide an education to future nurses who are going to be leaders, educators and expert clinicians.

Valerie Hunt, Ph.D., RN 

With the help of scholarship funds, Dr. Hunt completed a two-year master’s program in nursing at VCU during which she fell in love with the natural beauty of the state and appreciated the diversity she encountered on the MCV Campus.

“I made a lot of wonderful friends, the school and faculty were great, and there was a sense of belonging for everybody,” she said.

These experiences made it easy for Dr. Hunt to decide to support the school that helped her find a successful and fulfilling career in nursing. Dr. Hunt and her husband have created a charitable gift annuity to support the VCU School of Nursing. She and her husband both found the entire process easy to navigate.

“I wanted to support the VCU School of Nursing because it will continue to provide an education to future nurses who are going to be leaders, educators and expert clinicians,” Dr. Hunt said. “And just like I had the opportunity to be in a strong program, I want to see that go forward for others.”

In addition, Dr. Hunt said, “Setting up a charitable gift annuity provides a benefit to the school, but also a benefit to the individual who makes the contribution.” She and her husband will receive income for the rest of their lives, and the joy in knowing that their gift will provide future support to the School of Nursing.

valerie hunt
When she’s not busy inspiring students, Dr. Hunt is a also proud mother and grandmother. Photo courtesy of Valerie Hunt.

“It’s wonderful to give a gift that will have such positive results,” Dr. Hunt said.

Dr. Hunt currently teaches nursing and health administration in the graduate nursing program at Regis College in Weston, Massachusetts. She has also served as the associate dean at Regis and in additional executive leadership positions, for which she credited the School of Nursing as having prepared her.

“I feel proud of the background I have,” Dr. Hunt said, “And I believe that the graduate program prepared me for that.”

If you would like to learn about charitable gift annuities or other ways to make a planned gift in support of the School of Nursing, please contact Ann Deppman, J.D., assistant vice president of planned giving for Virginia Commonwealth University, at or 804-828-7370.