$1.1 million gift creates scholarships for Penn State Behrend students

An Erie man who died in 2012 left his entire estate – valued at more than $1.1 million – to Penn State Erie, The Behrend College. The money will create new Trustee Scholarships in the college’s School of Engineering.

Frank S. Palkovic earned an associate degree in drafting design and technology at Penn State Behrend in 1968. He went on to earn a bachelor of science in engineering at Penn State Harrisburg.

Palkovic worked as a civil engineer, first at PRC Engineering and later at Consoer Townsend Envirodyne. After retiring, he moved to Port St. Lucie, Fla. He died on Oct. 12, 2012.

Palkovic asked that his entire estate be used to support the engineering programs at Penn State Behrend. His gift will provide more than 50 new Trustee Scholarships every year.

“Trustee Scholarships are awarded to students who have the highest financial need,” said Ralph Ford, director of the School of Engineering and associate dean for industry and external relations. “We are grateful to Mr. Palkovic for his generosity, which will make an engineering education accessible for many qualified students.”

The Trustee Matching Scholarship Program maximizes the impact of private giving while directing funds to students as quickly as possible, meeting the urgent need for scholarship support. In this groundbreaking philanthropic model, Penn State will immediately match 5 percent of Palkovic’s total gift for student awards. This University match, which is approximately equal to the endowment’s annual spendable income, continues in perpetuity, doubling the support available for students with financial need.

Palkovic’s gift will help Penn State Behrend reach its goals in For the Future: The Campaign for Penn State Students, which is directed toward a shared vision of Penn State as the most comprehensive, student-centered research university in America. The University is engaging Penn State’s alumni and friends as partners in achieving six key objectives: ensuring student access and opportunity, enhancing honors education, enriching the student experience, building faculty strength and capacity, fostering discovery and creativity, and sustaining the University’s tradition of quality. The campaign’s top priority is keeping a Penn State degree affordable for students and families. The For the Future campaign is the most ambitious effort of its kind in Penn State’s history, with the goal of securing $2 billion by 2014.

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Last Updated January 28, 2014