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Talented and committed undergraduate students are Penn State's lifeblood. At its founding, the University gave the highest priority to their education and career preparation, and ever since it has held steadfast to that ideal. Today, undergraduate studies are offered in more than 160 fields of broad scope that demand rigorous commitment from both students and faculty. The goal is to make sure that opportunities for a Penn State education remain available to qualified students.

Unfortunately, as tuition has increased to meet rising educational costs, students and their families often find it difficult, if not impossible, to consider college a realistic goal. Rising tuition undermines one of the University's most important hallmarks-accessibility. The federal legislation, dating from 1862, that created land-grant colleges and universities obligated them to offer instruction at a cost that was affordable by families of average means. However, a long series of annual state appropriations that have been far below University requests, coupled with rising operational costs, have resulted in ever-greater dependence on tuition as a source of income. More endowed scholarships for financially needy students are vital if Penn State is to continue to meet its historic mandate of accessibility.

To learn more about scholarship opportunities at Penn State, please contact Diana Patterson, director of development, 724-773-3558.