Stern establishes educational equity scholarship in the Schreyer Honors College

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Penn State alumnus Brian Stern will always admire the way his mother, Lenore, instilled the value of education in him and his two sisters.

Credit: Schreyer Honors College / Penn StateCreative Commons

“She raised us to appreciate the importance of a good education and made it possible, both in terms of the foundational preparation and financially, to pursue what we were passionate about,” Stern said. “She paved the way for us to do that.”

The Lenore Stern Memorial Educational Equity Scholarship is the result of a $75,000 gift by Brian Stern in conjunction with his sister, Dina Shapiro, which will be matched 1:1 by the University and support undergraduate students in the Schreyer Honors College through the recently concluded Educational Equity Matching Program. The program matched scholarships created by Penn State alumni and friends that enhance the University’s ability to recruit and retain students whose gender, race, ethnic, cultural, and/or national background contribute to the diversity of the student body and who have a demonstrated financial need. Although matching funds are no longer available, educational equity scholarships will remain a priority for the University’s current fundraising campaign, “A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence.”

“Building a diverse community of Scholars who excel in the classroom and lead in their communities remains one of our primary goals in the Schreyer Honors College, and this scholarship will help us ensure that those Scholars can excel without worrying about financial stress,” said Schreyer Honors College Dean Peggy A. Johnson. “We are incredibly grateful to Brian and his family for their incredible support and generosity and honored to award a scholarship in his mother’s name.”

Stern, who graduated in 1990 from Penn State with a degree in accounting and a minor in business law, now serves on the Honors College’s External Advisory Board and enjoys learning the stories of current Scholars.

“I’ve been so impressed with the intellectual curiosity and character of the students that Penn State – and more specifically the Honors College – have attracted. And the ability to reach that kind of talent, and the impact that has on the future of the University and on the country as a whole, is meaningful,” he said.

The scholarship will be awarded to students who are enrolled or about to enroll in the Schreyer Honors College who have a demonstrated financial need to meet their necessary college expenses, and whose gender, ethnic, cultural, and/or national background contribute to the diversity of the College’s student body.

“Our goal should be that anybody who has that kind of intellect and drive should be able to pursue their educational goals without regard to financial considerations,” said Stern, who previously established the Stern Family Trustee Scholarship in the Schreyer Honors College. “The financial aspect shouldn’t be a deciding factor in whether or not someone chooses Penn State or chooses the Schreyer Honors College to pursue their education.”

This gift will advance "A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence," a focused campaign that seeks to elevate Penn State’s position as a leading public university in a world defined by rapid change and global connections. With the support of alumni and friends, “A Greater Penn State” seeks to fulfill the three key imperatives of a 21st-century public university: keeping the doors to higher education open to hardworking students regardless of financial well-being; creating transformative experiences that go beyond the classroom; and impacting the world by serving communities and fueling discovery, innovation and entrepreneurship. To learn more about “A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence,” visit


Last Updated October 29, 2020