As the new school year begins, 184 local students will be getting a jump-start on their educations, thanks to community members who have established scholarship or award funds at Centre Foundation.

“These scholarships are made possible by the generosity of community members who understand the value of education,” said Molly Kunkel, Executive Director at Centre Foundation. “We are honored to support students from across Centre County and beyond in their pursuit of education, whether that is at a two-year college, four-year university, or trade school.”

In total, $304,000 was distributed to students attending 40 post-secondary schools. Recipients include graduating seniors from all five Centre County school districts, in addition to school districts from surrounding counties. A number of the scholarships also support returning adult students.

Oftentimes, scholarships are established to honor an individual’s impact on the community.

For example, the Philip D. Adams Memorial Scholarship Award was established in 2011 by the Houtz-Meyers-Rose American Legion Post 867 to honor the Bellefonte teacher and Legion member who founded the Legion’s scholarship committee.

This year’s scholarship recipient, Samuel Horner, graduated from Bellefonte Area High School and will be studying kinesiology at Penn State. “I am so blessed to receive this scholarship. I hope that I will be able to repay everyone for their donations by the hard work and success of my career,” said Horner.

The C. Morris Lutz Memorial Scholarship Fund was established in 2003 to honor Charles Morris Lutz who served several years as the Patton Township representative on the State College school board. This scholarship honors his personal contributions to the school district and is awarded annually to State High seniors who wish to become teachers.

Chloe Snellgrove received this year’s scholarship and will be attending the University of Colorado Boulder to study environmental engineering. “If I look at my life ten years from now, I hope to not only be certified in teaching STEM at an elementary school but also teaching my own children and the community around me,” said Snellgrove.

The Stella Jedrziewski Wawrynovic Scholarship Fund issues eight scholarships annually in the Clearfield and Philipsburg-Osceola school districts. Her commitment to the community lives on each year as these students pursue their educational dreams thanks to her generosity.

One of this year’s recipients, Meizhen Belko, graduated from Philipsburg-Osceola Area High School and will be attending Slippery Rock University to study psychology. “My plan is to become a clinical psychologist. This award will help further my education and help me achieve my goals. I am beyond thankful for this scholarship and appreciate all the support and encouragement,” said Belko.

“Each year, I enjoy learning about the stories and accomplishments of all of these incredible students,” said Lauren Petrone, Administration and Scholarship Coordinator at Centre Foundation. “I am honored to work with the school districts and fund holders to facilitate the annual scholarship process.”

High school seniors wishing to apply for scholarships should contact their respective school districts to learn more about available scholarships.

Donors who wish to establish or contribute to a scholarship fund are encouraged to contact Centre Foundation at 814-237-6229.