This fall, 204 local students are receiving a jump-start on their education, thanks to community members who have established scholarships or award funds at Centre Foundation.

“The value of a good education is particularly deep-rooted in our community. It is thanks to the support of generous community members, who continue to invest in the education of future generations, that these scholarships are granted,” said Molly Kunkel, Executive Director at Centre Foundation. “Their support honors students across Centre County as they pursue a variety of educational paths.”

In total, $336,740 was distributed to students attending more than 40 post-secondary schools. Recipients include graduating seniors from all five Centre County school districts, in addition to school districts from surrounding counties and returning adult students.

Oftentimes, scholarships are established to honor an individual’s impact on the community. For example, the Julia and Ray C. Noll Memorial Scholarship Fund was established to honor the legacy of the Noll family, who led exemplary careers rooted in serving their community. In the 1930s, Julia led the local transformation from one and two-room schoolhouses into our current modern school system. Ray served as a trustee of the Centre County Hospital for nearly 40 years, while also running Whiterock Quarries, which supplied blast furnace and fluxing stone to steel mills during World War II. This scholarship honors their legacy by providing financial assistance to a Bellefonte Area senior who excels in academics, extra-curricular activities, and has excellent citizenship.

This year’s recipient, Tyler Muse, graduated from Bellefonte Area High School and plans to study Advertising and Personal Relations at Penn State. “The fact that my hard work was worth something means the world to me and I know I’ve accomplished something. Thank you for choosing me for this amazing award,” said Muse. 

The Donald W. Carruthers, Jr. Memorial Scholarship Fund was established in memory of “Don,” who was left paralyzed after an Army accident in World War II. In a manner characteristic of his great capacity for endurance and self-discipline, Don persevered through months of physical therapy. He went on to not only walk again with the aid of braces and crutches, but to volunteer as a coach for baseball and basketball, enjoy a successful career at Penn State’s Applied Research Laboratory, and dedicate time to the community as chairman of the Police Civil Service Commission. The scholarship honors State College High seniors who show outstanding character, integrity, motivation, self-discipline, and leadership.

Kai Ludwig received this year’s scholarship and will be attending Penn State to study Neurological Science. “This scholarship brings honor and pride to my family and gives me the courage to continue striving for success,” said Ludwig.

The Roy D. and Kathryn K. Shoemaker Scholarship is issued annually in memory of the couple’s commitment to the community and local agricultural needs. In life, Roy and Kathryn were lifelong residents of the Centre Region whose love of the area inspired their fund. In addition to providing two scholarships, the fund also benefits 13 local charitable organizations.

One of this year’s recipients, Kendall Kleinman, graduated from State College Area High School and will be attending Penn State University to study Immunology and Infectious Diseases. “This [scholarship] will allow me to continue to work on my education. I am also interested in public health and want to get a fifth-year master’s at PSU Hershey. I am very appreciative of this scholarship and how it will help me further my education, “ said Kleinman.

“Each year, I look forward to hearing the stories and individual accomplishments of these students.  It is a joy to witness their hard work manifest into well-deserved academic opportunities,” said Lauren Petrone, Administration and Scholarship Coordinator at Centre Foundation. 

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

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