Donors 'open doors' for education with Penn State program

Donor Ross Kester with Mary Ruth Wilson.

Donor Ross Kester was the first to establish an Open Doors Scholarship at Penn State DuBois. The retired instructor in the campus engineering program named his scholarship in honor of his late colleague William H. Keown. Kester is pictured with Keown's daughter Mary Ruth Wilson.

Credit: Penn State

DUBOIS, Pa. — Donors who choose to support the education of students through scholarship programs have an opportunity to make a much larger impact through a program currently offered by Penn State. The Open Doors Scholarship Program offers a permanent 2:1 match for gifts made to help students with financial need. This means a gift of $30,000 by a donor becomes $90,000 with Penn State's match. The program is only available for a limited window of time, through June 30, 2018, or until available matching funds are expended.   

Open Doors Scholarships support students who are enrolled in one of five programs the University has created to address the financial, academic and personal challenges that Penn State undergraduates face in earning their degrees.

Donors who have already created Open Doors Scholarships at Penn State DuBois include Ross Kester, a retired instructor in the campus engineering program. He established a scholarship in memory of his former colleague William H. Keown. Long-time campus supporter Charles Snapp, Christine Beretsel '86, Robert G. Johnson '71, William '73 and Nancy Allenbaugh, David '69 and Deborah Ross, Farmer's National Bank, and the Symmco Foundation have also put their names on Open Door Scholarships at Penn State DuBois that will help students with educational costs that they may otherwise not be able to cover on their own. As a result of these recent gifts, campus scholarship endowments will increase by $900,000.

"The generous commitment of our donors to scholarship endowments and other projects enables our DuBois campus to fulfill its mission of educating the citizens of our region and sustaining its service to the region," said Chancellor M. Scott McBride. "Now, through this one-time, two-to-one match offered by the Open Doors Scholarship Program, donors can triple the already vital impact of helping students to pursue and complete a coveted Penn State degree."

Illustrating how vital that impact is are measures of financial need at Penn State Dubois. At Penn State DuBois, 90 percent of campus students have a need for financial aid. Though $450,000 in scholarship dollars is currently awarded annually, many students remain in need. The average unmet need per student is more than $7,000 a year.

For more information, contact Penn State DuBois Director of Development Jean Wolf at 814-372-3038 or [email protected]. You can also read more at