Weis Markets designates funds for Summer Scholars program

Penn State Schuylkill has received $5,000 from Weis Markets, through the company's participation in the Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) Program, in support of the campus' Summer Scholars youth program. The company's overall $10,000 EITC contribution to Penn State included $5,000 that was designated to Penn State Altoona. The EITC Program, administered by Pennsylvania's Department of Community and Economic Development, issues tax credits to eligible businesses contributing to a scholarship organization, an educational improvement organization, and/or a pre-kindergarten scholarship organization.

Penn State Schuylkill Summer Scholars, administered by the office of Continuing Education, is an enrichment program that is offered to local high school students who will be juniors and seniors in the fall of 2015. This program will provide academic challenge, along with three college credits, in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Students will attend class on campus while studying and receiving instruction from Penn State faculty. The goal of the program is to enrich their knowledge while promoting interest in STEM related fields, ultimately encouraging students to enter careers in fields such as biology, physics, chemistry or mathematics.

Darcy Medica, interim director of academic affairs, has been coordinating with the office of Continuing Education on course scheduling for the upcoming summer session. "This experience will provide local high school students with the opportunity to earn college credit, which can apply to any course of study within Penn State, as well as to many other colleges and universities. We have first-class faculty who will provide an exceptional learning experience for these participating students," said Medica.

Private support for Summer Scholars, provided by individuals, businesses, and corporations, assists Penn State Schuylkill in meeting the operating expenses associated with offering a college level course to high-achieving high school students. As a result of this EITC funding, and a fifty percent scholarship offered by the University, the students who attend this program will see a significant reduction in the amount of their financial contribution toward the tuition cost of this course.

"The donation provided by Weis Markets will enable us to provide this exclusive accelerated program to local students who may have otherwise missed this exceptional opportunity," said Dr. Kelly M. Austin, chancellor, Penn State Schuylkill. "The campus, and the community that it serves, are appreciative of the financial support that we continue to receive from generous local businesses and organizations."

Penn State alumni, friends, and corporate partners, such as Weis Markets, are invaluable partners in fulfilling the University's land-grant mission of education, research and service. Private gifts from alumni and friends enrich the experiences of students both in and out of the classroom; expand the research and teaching capacity of our faculty; enhance the University's ability to recruit and retain top students and faculty; and help to ensure that students from every economic background have access to a Penn State education. The University's colleges and campuses are now enlisting the support of alumni and friends to advance a range of unit-specific initiatives.

Information on the Commonwealth's EITC program is available online at http://www.newpa.com/programs-funding/