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Honors & Awards
February 15, 2023

McGuire Scholarship Program Wins NASPA Gold Excellence Award

McGuire Scholars

The Robert J. McGuire Scholarship Program at St. Francis College (SFC) has been named the winner of the 2022-2023 National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA) Gold Excellence Award for First-Generation College Student Success.

“This is a tremendous accomplishment,” noted Anthony Desiderio, Director of Scholar Programs at St. Francis College. “Winning a NASPA Gold Excellence Award is no easy feat and a testament to the hard work and dedication of everyone involved with the Robert J. McGuire Scholarship Program.” NASPA is the leading organization for student affairs professionals in higher education, dedicated to promoting student success and providing its members with the resources they need to excel in their careers.

Named after a former New York City police commissioner, the Robert J. McGuire Scholarship Program was established at St. Francis College in 2015 by the Fred and Judy Wilpon Foundation, with the goal of supporting 15 college students each academic year with tuition and wraparound services for them to persevere in higher education and give back to their community throughout their time at SFC and beyond. Since then, SFC has accepted 20 to 30 students to the program each academic year and graduated 70, serving more than 160 students in total. Eighty percent of the students in the Robert J. McGuire Scholarship Program are first-generation college students.

McGuire Scholars who have graduated from St. Francis College have gone on to pursue careers in companies such as National Grid, NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, PKF O’Connor Davies, the Kings County District Attorney’s Office and Weill-Cornell Medicine, and they continue to give back to the McGuire Scholar community through mentorship.

“We are thrilled to see the impact that the Robert J. McGuire Scholarship Program has had on the lives of so many students, and we are proud to be recognized by NASPA for our efforts,” said Desiderio, who, along with Charles “CJ” Celestin, Success Coach and Coordinator of Scholar Programs at St. Francis College, will be presenting on the program at the 2023 NASPA Annual Conference, to be held in April in Boston.

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