Fund for the Future

The Renaissance Fund honors the Alumni Association’s commitment to serving Penn State.

Building of Renaissance Fund

A milestone year for the Alumni Association took on added significance in September, when the association was named the 2020 honoree of the Penn State Renaissance Fund. The honor, coinciding with the yearlong celebration of the Alumni Association’s 150th anniversary, recognizes the organization’s contributions to the Penn State and State College communities. A virtual event marking the award is scheduled to take place on Nov. 17.

Established in 1969, the Renaissance Fund provides scholarship support to students with the greatest financial need; recipients receive an annual award of $1,500 for up to four years if they maintain a 3.0 grade point average. During the 2019–20 academic year, more than 700 undergraduates across the university received more than $1,049,600 in scholarship support from the Renaissance Fund. The Alumni Association announced it would match all gifts made to its Renaissance Scholarship up to a total of $500,000.

Each year, the Renaissance Fund’s board of directors seeks to recognize honorees with deep roots in the Centre Region, close relationships with civic and university leaders, and a commitment to philanthropy. Through various endowments and other support across the university, the Alumni Association has given more than $16 million in total support for Penn State. “The Alumni Association’s pledge to match gifts to Renaissance Scholarships is a powerful testament to the depth of their commitment to the university,” said Renaissance Fund president George Henning Jr. ’63 Lib. “The association not only creates vital connections between the university, its alumni and friends, but also extends opportunities to continue the growth, discovery and commitment to excellence that students cultivate on campus. We are proud to recognize the organization as this year’s honoree.”

Alumni Association CEO Paul Clifford ’20 MEd Edu WC cited “the leaders who came before us who built this Alumni Association into one of the best in the world … we work each day to meet that standard because it’s what Penn State alumni deserve. This honor is even more meaningful to us because of the numerous Penn Staters who will benefit from this scholarship.”

Gifts to the Penn State Alumni Association Renaissance Scholarship will advance the university’s fundraising campaign, “A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence.” To register for the virtual celebration, or to make a gift, go to