The Martin Scholarships were created in 2016 through the generosity of Demond T. and Twakia "Kia" Martin. Demond ('97) and Kia ('98) Martin met as students at UNC Charlotte. Both participated in the University Transition Opportunities Program (UTOP), which facilitates the transition from high school to college and focuses on serving underrepresented students. While at UNC Chalotte, Demond and Kia were active members of the student body. Demond joined Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity, Mu Tau chapter, and served as president. Demond became involved in student government and served as the SGA president as a sophomore. Upon graduation, Demond worked in the White House as Assistant to the White House Cheif of Staff. Both he and Kia went on to attend Harvard. He obtained his MBA and she obtained both her master's and doctorate in education. Demond has enjoyed a successful career as a partner at an investment management firm, and Kia serves as an assistant professor in Language and Literacy at Wheelock College.