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01/22/2014

New York Community Bank Foundation pledges $122,000 to Pace University for endowed scholarship and internships to benefit Queens and Long Island students

NEW YORK, NY, January 22, 2014 – Pace University today announced that the New York Community Bank Foundation has pledged a long-term grant of $122,000 to support students from Queens and Long Island.

The New York Community Bank Foundation Endowed Scholarship provides critical support to students from Queens and Long Island pursuing their undergraduate education at Pace. One of Pace’s most distinguished alumni, Joseph R. Ficalora, is a board member of the foundation and the President, Chief Executive Officer, and a Director of New York Community Bancorp, Inc.

The new funding will enhance access to education, provide relief from the financial burden of student loans, and support experiential learning at unique and innovative nonprofits and social enterprises.

The Helene & Grant Wilson Center for Social Entrepreneurship at Pace offers a Summer Funded Internship program that places 15 to 20 interns with New York area nonprofits each summer. For summer 2013, the Wilson Center received a record 344 applications for 20 positions at New York social enterprises and nonprofit organizations.  A final group of 17 students were placed. A portion of the funding from the New York Community Bank Foundation will cover a stipend and administrative costs associated with one Summer Funded Internship in 2014, reserved for a nonprofit or social enterprise in Queens.

“The need for thoughtful, well-educated leaders in nonprofits is growing,” said Rebecca Tekula, PhD, the Center’s Executive Director. “We are thrilled to have the support of the New York Community Bank Foundation to offer hands-on experiential learning opportunities for students in service for nonprofits and social enterprises in Queens.”

As a private institution, Pace relies heavily on support from alumni and other funders to provide an affordable education to its students. Scholarship support profoundly influences students’ ability to take full advantage of their education and of all that Pace has to offer, as, increasingly, families are finding it difficult to fully underwrite their children’s education.

Pace draws many students from New York City and its surrounding areas, including Long Island and Queens. Last year, Pace enrolled 1,734 students from those two areas combined.

Says alum Joseph Ficalora: “It is an honor to establish this endowment.  To be engaged in the promotion of education and service, is to be a good corporate citizen.  Each scholarship and internship will not only benefit the student who receives it, but also the communities that will be touched by his/her non-profit work in the future. This is a great example of how the NYCB Foundation can serve communities in a meaningful way through supporting education.”

“Education provides the foundation for positive change in the world,” says Dr. Marian Conway, the NYCB Foundation’s Executive Director.  “It levels the playing field for the disadvantaged and gives those entering the non-profit world the background in culture, history, and first-hand experience of what works and doesn’t, with which to make effective change. The NYCB Foundation is proud that we can help students help the world.”

About Pace University

Since 1906, Pace has educated thinking professionals by providing high quality education for the professions on a firm base of liberal learning amid the advantages of the New York metropolitan area. A private university, Pace has campuses in New York City and Westchester County, New York, enrolling nearly 13,000 students in bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral programs in its Lubin School of Business, Dyson College of Arts and Sciences, College of Health Professions, School of Education, School of Law, and Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems. www.pace.edu.

Media contact: Bill Caldwell, Pace, 212-346-1597, wcaldwell@pace.edu

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