Wafa Family Open Doors Scholarship established at Scranton campus

Dr. Wafa and wife receiving lion shrine statue

Penn State Scranton Director of Development Christine Ostroski, left, presents Sahar Al Masri and Marwin Wafa, Penn State Scranton chancellor, with a Nittany Lion Shrine statue to commemorate their establishment of the Wafa Family Open Doors Scholarship.

Credit: Amy Gruzesky

DUNMORE, Pa. — Penn State Scranton Chancellor Marwan A. Wafa and his wife, Sahar Al Masri, have further solidified their commitment to the campus by establishing the Wafa Family Open Doors Scholarship for campus students.

The Open Doors Scholarship Program aims to address the financial, academic and personal challenges undergraduates face earning their degrees. Donors create scholarships for students with financial need who are enrolled in one of five programs Penn State has created to help undergraduates succeed academically.

To be considered for the Wafa Family Scholarship, which received a 2:1 match from the University via a recently concluded matching program, students must participate in the RaiseMe, Pathway to Success: Summer Start (PaSSS) or Complete Penn State programs. First preference will be given to students involved in PaSSS.

“Sahar and I are very proud to have established this scholarship for the campus community. And it is especially gratifying to be able to assist students hoping to achieve their goal of earning a high-quality Penn State degree that will put them on the path to a fulfilling career,” Wafa said of the scholarship, which is among more than 170 offered annually by Penn State Scranton.

“Penn State Scranton is extremely grateful for the generosity of the Wafa family in establishing the Wafa Family Open Doors Scholarship, which will help hard-working students achieve their dream of a Penn State education,” added Christine Ostroski, campus director of development. “This scholarship will have a long-term and lasting financial impact for the students at Penn State Scranton.”

Penn State’s PaSSS program allows students to jumpstart their college careers in a more relaxed summer setting, at a reduced cost per course. RaiseMe is a national scholarship program for low-income students that includes Penn State among its more than 250 college partners. Complete Penn State assists students in their last two semesters of study who have experienced a personal setback that could hinder their chances of finishing their degree.

Beneficiaries of the programs include students from low-income areas, those who are transferring to the University Park campus from another Penn State campus, those who are at risk of not graduating due to unexpected hardships, and others who may benefit from extra support. While the 2:1 University match has concluded, the University is still seeking support for Open Doors Scholarships.  

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 fueling discovery, innovation and entrepreneurship.

To learn more about “A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence,” visit greaterpennstate.psu.edu.