New Kensington scholarship reception recognizes current and incoming students

Penn State New Kensington's scholarship receptions are semiannual events that bring together scholarship recipients and donors. The socials give students who receive New Kensington campus scholarships a chance to meet their benefactors face to face.

The spring reception, held March 21 at Oakmont Country Club, recognized current students who earned scholarships for the second semester and incoming freshmen who were awarded scholarships for the 2014 fall semester. More than 60 students and donors attended the reception.

Aishwarya Venketeswaran, an electro-mechanical engineering technology major, was the student speaker. Former campus student Suzette Shaffer Schultz, Shaffer Family Trustee Scholarship, was the keynote speaker and provided a benefactor’s prospective. Schultz has a long history of philanthropic activity at Penn State, with the New Kensington campus and the College of Engineering as the major beneficiaries of her gifts. Her family’s Penn State bloodline runs through the New Kensington and University Park campuses.

“Attending the New Kensington campus was a great way to start my college education -- small class sizes, lots of support, and a caring staff,” said Schultz, a senior project manager for AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals. “In addition, it allowed me the opportunity to live at home and work part time."

Kevin Snider, chancellor of the campus, welcomed the guests and gave opening remarks. He spoke of scholarships as a critical component of mission of Penn State New Kensington.

“Scholarships are the lifeblood of the campus’ history and its vibrant future,” said Snider. “Without the thoughtful support of our scholarship donors, many of our finest moments and educational opportunities for students would not exist.”

Hal Smith, associate professor of information sciences and technology and assistant director of academic affairs, gave brief remarks on the quality of a Penn State education. A networking session followed the speakers’ remarks.

Campus scholarships are awarded to eligible students on the basis of academic promise, leadership qualities, community service and financial need. This year, new and returning students at the New Kensington campus earned a total of $539,000 in scholarship money, $304,000 from private donors and $234,000 from the University. The campus has 54 scholarship endowments, annual gifts and program awards that funded 225 students this year with an average award of $2,400 per student.

Penn State New Kensington is part of "For the Future: The Campaign for Penn State Students," a University-wide effort to raise private donations to strengthen support for students, faculty and programs. All gifts enhance Penn State's historic mission of teaching, research and service to society.

For more on giving to the campus, call Donna Speer, director of development, 724-334-6057 or visit online.

For a list of spring scholarships and recipients, visit

For photos of the reception, visit

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Last Updated April 03, 2014