Establishing a Named Scholarship Fund

Since 1969, the Westchester Community College Foundation has directly helped over 13,000 students advance their education through scholarships and grants.  Over $1 million in student support has been distributed annually since 2007.

Why set up a scholarship fund
Despite the College’s best efforts to contain costs, tuition and fees continue to rise.  Annual tuition now exceeds $4,100 for full time students, and this can be an obstacle for many exceptional students who have a profound and compelling need for assistance.  For many of our students, scholarships make the essential difference that allows eager learners the opportunity to pursue their dreams.

Establishing a Scholarship Fund will provide a source of funding for deserving students in need while bestowing a valuable sense of recognition and accomplishment.  These awards have a tremendous impact on the lives of students, most often making the crucial difference in a young person’s future.

Types of Scholarship Funds
Gifts to Scholarship Funds are completely tax-deductible, and can be made on an annual basis (renewable every year) or permanently endowed.

  • An Annual Named Scholarship provides direct funding which is renewable from year to year.   To name a fund with specific criteria we ask for a minimal commitment of $5,000 annually.  These gifts are awarded in full in the year they are donated.
  • An Endowed Named Scholarship can establish a fund that will provide on-going support.  A minimum donation of $45,000 will provide approximately $1,500 in scholarship support each year after an initial first year of maturity.  Gifts at this level and higher will establish a named fund in perpetuity with specific criteria.*

Recognition and criteria
Many donors have set up Named Scholarship Funds to honor or recognize a loved one with criteria that reflect their interests.  While our Scholarship Office aims to have the most flexibility to meet the needs of current students and the applicant pool, we encourage potential donors to think about where their gift might make the most impact. Please see Scholarships for Continuing Students. Sample scholarship criteria:

The Mary Smith Memorial Scholarship is awarded to students who maintain a GPA of 3.0 or better, and have significant financial need.  Preference will be given to students with a record of service to the College.

Scholarship Process
Students may submit applications for scholarships in the fall and spring.  Applicants go through a selection process, and are screened by our independent Scholarship Committee. Grade point average is a primary consideration for the Foundation in making its awards, but other factors, such as financial need, special circumstances, and service to the College or community are also taken into consideration, depending on the terms of the particular scholarship. Please see Scholarship Office page for a detailed description of the award process and list of named scholarships.

Your support in action
Donors of named scholarship funds receive letters from the recipients of their generosity, and are welcome to follow their progress.  In October, scholarship recipients and donors are invited to participate in our annual Scholarship Recognition Ceremony.

Please contact Ilene Lieberman, Director of Annual Giving, to discuss establishing a Named Scholarship Fund.  (914) 606-6834

*Gifts to permanent endowment funds of WCC Foundation are governed by New York state law which dictates that annual distributions from permanent endowment funds are to be formulated using a series of prudent factors contained in the law.  While this law also allows for limited invasion of principal where warranted, which may well occur from time to time depending on market conditions, it is the WCC Foundation Board of Director’s policy to maintain and grow these funds over time.