May 03, 2022EducationPress Release

Wing 2 Wing Foundation Donates $60,000 to Fairfield U. Mentor Program

Co-founders Alys and Brad D. Smith Join Fairfield Community Development Corporation and the Marshall University School of Medicine to extend access to educational and entrepreneurial opportunities in West Virginia

Huntington, W.Va., May 3, 2021 – Wing 2 Wing Foundation announces a grant of $60,000 to the Fairfield U. Mentor Program to ensure the continuation of mentorship and educational opportunities for youth in Fairfield, West Virginia. The funding provided by Wing 2 Wing Foundation is essential to enable the Fairfield CDC and Marshall University School of Medicine to run the program for 30 participants during the next two or more years. In partnership with local organizations, Wing 2 Wing Foundation furthers its commitment to level the playing field of opportunity throughout Appalachia.

Fairfield U. Mentor Program enables mentor relationships and educational opportunities for middle school and high school students. The program exposes participants to different STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math) pathways, particularly in medical and healthcare professions, bridging the gap between children in the Fairfield community and Marshall University School of Medicine and School of Pharmacy. Fairfield U. aims to encourage mentees to find their passion and advance on to pursue post-high school education or job training in their desired field.

“Fairfield U. is honored to receive the support of Brad and Alys Smith and the remarkable Wing 2 Wing Foundation,” said Jacob R Kilgore, Founder and Director of Fairfield U. Mentor Program. “With this donation, our program is financially secure for several years to come, and this support allows us to continue to positively impact the livelihoods of the children of the Fairfield Community.”

The funding from Wing 2 Wing Foundation is making up nearly 30% of the total funding goal that Fairfield U. aims to achieve by January 2023. To ensure that the program sustains success, Wing 2 Wing Foundation will annually review the progression of the program and assess the potential for additional support. 

“The Fairfield U Mentor Program aligns with the Wing 2 Wing Foundation’s core values,” said Alys Smith, Co-founder of the Wing 2 Wing Foundation and First Lady of Marshall University. “The organization’s focus on educational, entrepreneurial and environmental opportunities sets a remarkable example for local businesses and philanthropies, as well as the children who get to experience these enriching programs.”

Wing 2 Wing Foundation welcomes others to support the betterment of West Virginia via funding for the Fairfield U Mentor Program and local organizations that are doing good for Appalachia and beyond. Students and professionals looking to participate with Fairfield U. Mentor Program should visit to get involved.

For further information, please contact:

Wing 2 Wing Foundation

[email protected] 


About Wing 2 Wing Foundation:

Founded by Alys and Brad D. Smith, the Wing 2 Wing Foundation supports increased education and entrepreneurial opportunities in West Virginia, while preserving and promoting the natural environment of Appalachia. By focusing on education, entrepreneurship and the environment, the Wing 2 Wing Foundation strives to bring about substantial and lasting change to the region by providing grants, scholarships, donations and creating conditions for success. Building on the Foundation’s commitment to advance entrepreneurial interest and capability throughout Appalachia, Wing 2 Wing Ventures also accelerates entrepreneurial success through proven best practices, personal coaching and capital investment to early-stage start-ups.

About Fairfield U Mentor Program:

The Fairfield U Mentor Program was created in partnership between the Fairfield Community Development Corporation (CDC) and the Marshall University School of Medicine. The program, designed for children aged 12-17 in the Fairfield community, provides mentorship and educational opportunities to building community pride, expose local children to different STEM pathways, particularly medicine and healthcare professions, and build individualized, personal mentor-mentee relationships that lead to fostering growth among participants that will one day give back to their home community of Fairfield. Fairfield U. was founded and is directed by lifelong Huntington resident and Marshall-Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine Class of 2022 graduate Jacob R. Kilgore.