Scholarship luncheon celebrates donors and recipients at Penn State DuBois

Speakers from the scholarship Luncheon at Penn State DuBois. From left to right, Dave Spigelmyer, Hunter Raffeinner, Jungwoo Ryoo, Andrea Lecuyer and Dan Kohlhepp.

Speakers from the scholarship Luncheon at Penn State DuBois. From left to right, Dave Spigelmyer, Hunter Raffeinner, Jungwoo Ryoo, Andrea Lecuyer and Dan Kohlhepp.

Credit: Penn State

DuBOIS, Pa. — Investing in student success has always been a priority at Penn State DuBois, not only for the faculty and staff at the campus, but also for the greater community. That sentiment was fully on display on Friday when students and donors gathered at the PAW Center for the annual scholarship luncheon.

Scholarships at Penn State DuBois continue to make an impact, with scholarships being awarded now totaling nearly $600,000 in scholarships awarded during the 2023-24 academic year. The annual scholarship luncheon brings recipients and donors together for an opportunity to learn more about each other and get to know each other on a more personal level.

Jungwoo Ryoo, chancellor and chief academic officer, opened the event with a warm welcome and some opening remarks.

“Today we join with you to reflect upon and celebrate the effects that donor scholarship funds have on our students,” Ryoo said. “Thanks to the generosity of our donors, we have awarded scholarships to over 170 students. We are exceedingly grateful.”

Student speakers for the event included Andrea Lecuyer, recipient of the PA Wildlife Habitat Unlimited Scholarship, the Sell Kohlhepp Open Doors Scholarship and the Sam King Trustee Scholarship, and Hunter Raffeinner, recipient of the Robert E. Umbaugh Trustee Scholarship.

Lecuyer, an adult learner and mother of three, highlighted just how much the scholarships she received gave her the support she needed to be successful at Penn State DuBois.

“Receiving these scholarships has helped me tremendously,” Lecuyer said. “Through our donors’ generosity, I’ve been able to obtain the items I’ve needed for my program with ease. Thank you for helping me to succeed. Your generosity supersedes and goes far beyond the momentary aspect. Having someone that does not know you but believes in you and wants you to succeed is awe-inspiring.”

Raffeinner expressed his gratitude to all donors, sharing just how much they impact students at Penn State DuBois.

“I would like to thank you all who donate to us, the students,” Raffeinner said. “You allow us to get the fullest out of our college experience and allow us to become better students, learners and respectable people as a whole.”

Offering the donor perspective on the day were Dave Spigelmyer, who has supported the Janice Elizabeth Erickson Scholarship and Dan Kohlhepp, whose gifts fund Doug and Jackie Kohlhepp Endowed Scholarship, the Kohlhepp Family Trustee Scholarship and the Sell Kohlhepp Open Doors Scholarship.

When he took the podium, Spigelmyer said everyone in his family is "Penn State Proud," with each member being connected in some way to the University. He also shared the background of the Janice Elizabeth Erickson Scholarship, honoring a family member who passed away in 2018 as the result of an act of domestic violence. He then offered a message to the students in attendance.

“Many of you think of donors from a financial perspective,” Spigelmyer said. “The most important thing you can do, even as students, is be a volunteer. Volunteer your time. Get involved in your community and make this a better planet. I also challenge you to be a critical thinker. Do not accept what others want you to think; rather, learn how to think for yourself.”

In his remarks, Kohlhepp said that the scholarship luncheon is one of the highlights of his year.

“This is a tremendous investment in Penn State DuBois that we are celebrating today,” Kohlhepp said. “Over the course of my career, I’ve made a living investing in good deals. But I think the best investment for everyone, including me, is to invest in a Penn State education. It’s really a good deal.”

Scholarships advance the University’s historic land-grant mission to serve and lead. Through philanthropy, alumni and friends are helping students to join the Penn State family and prepare for lifelong success; driving research, outreach and economic development that grow our shared strength and readiness for the future; and increasing the University’s impact for families, patients and communities across the commonwealth and around the world. Learn more by visiting raise.lhjbzcluotian.com.