Our History

Co-founder Senator Walter Stosch, Senate of Virginia

Co-founder Dr. Ray Gargiulo with GRASP advisor Mila Spaulding

GReat Aspirations Scholarship Program, Inc. (GRASP) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, charitable, college-access organization that assists Virginia’s students and families in reaching their educational goals for after high school. Founded in 1983 by Senator Walter Stosch, a longtime advocate for children, and Dr. Ray Gargiulo, a career educator, the nonprofit fulfilled the need for assisting and advising students in the development of an educational plan for after high school. At its core, the program's model has always been in-school advisors coaching students and parents, presenting financial aid education in school classroom settings, and delivering financial aid seminars in libraries and other public forums. GRASP currently serves 88 high schools across the Commonwealth of Virginia. In 2015, GRASP received the Richmond History Maker award from the Valentine Museum, and in 2017, the organization became one of the few nonprofits in Virginia recognized by the Standards for Excellence® Institute as having met all the requirements for the Standards for Excellence Standards Basics. GRASP has also received five consecutive 4-star ratings from Charity Navigator.