Alumni create new scholarship for Franciscan business majors


Paying for college these days is no walk in the park; it involves careful planning, saving, scraping and more than a few headaches. However, this spring the load will be considerably lightened for one lucky business major at Franciscan University of Steubenville, namely, the winner of the Jeffrey J. Anderson Business Leaders Scholarship.

Many students are unaware of the Jeffrey J. Anderson scholarship that was founded only last year by five Francsican alumni: Jonathan Anderson, Ann Baker, Peter Bremberg, Megan Renaud and Christie Routh.

“Jonathan had the idea and pitched it to each of us individually,” said Ann Baker, the member in charge of marketing the scholarship. “He had a desire to give back to Franciscan and to help raise solid, Catholic business leaders in today’s work force.”

All five members agree that their past education at Franciscan greatly shaped the business men and women that they are today.

“We would like to help change the world by encouraging business students at Franciscan,” said Baker, speaking for the group. “To attract and fund the highest caliber of students – those actively living their faith and passionate about business – to business programs at Franciscan, our stakes must be high.”

The scholarship is named after Jonathan Anderson’s late father Jeffrey, who did not have an easy life. As a child, he lived in several Catholic orphanages, and later worked to support his single mother and three siblings. He studied engineering for a short time in college, but was unable to finish due to his family’s needs.

“Jeffrey saw tremendous value in college education,” Baker said. “Through his life, he thanked God for the many great opportunities and successes that he had been given, often saying, ‘everything can be taken away from you but no one can ever take away what you have between your ears: your knowledge.'”

While paying for a college education is hard to say the least, founding a scholarship is no less easy. For the five founders, spread out from San Diego to New York City and everywhere in between, all with busy lives, it is quite the task.

“A large challenge has been spreading the word effectively about the scholarship,” said Baker. “We want to market the scholarship more externally and internally, and get more people aware of the scholarship through a Facebook page, a personal testimony of the 2013 winner, and a Franciscan Way article in the winter.”

In addition to Baker’s marketing endeavors, the other members must promote, administer and fund the scholarship. The scholarship is funded entirely by donations from family and friends of the founders, businesses and Franciscan alumni.

“We are so excited to expand and improve the scholarship this year to enhance its longevity for future years,” Baker said.

A word to all the wise business majors: applicants are strongly encouraged to apply for the scholarship this year. This spring, one rising sophomore or junior in the business program will be the fortunate recipient of the Jeffrey J. Anderson scholarship, and it could be you.

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