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Gannon University was founded on providing accessible education to students of all backgrounds and takes pride in continuing this tradition today.

Our founder, Archbishop John Mark Gannon, “who had been himself a poor local boy, but one who never forgot the lack of education and cultural advantages that beset him,” founded our university because he was “convinced that something had to be done for the education of the poor boys in Erie.”

This mission remains alive today through the Archbishop Gannon Scholars Program, which was established in 2014. The program targets students in the Erie Public Schools who have the academic credentials to be admitted to Gannon University but do not have the financial ability to do so. Students in the program receive full tuition assistance, ensuring they receive the
education that will empower them to reach their full potential.

Yet, for many of our students, tuition assistance alone doesn’t guarantee success. Some of them still struggle with meeting living expenses and could benefit from additional aid.

At Gannon, more than 95% of our students qualify for merit- and/or need-based financial aid. Our donors’ gifts make it possible to have provided more than $1.9 million from endowed scholarships to students in the recent year. With additional planned giving commitments benefiting Gannon’s endowment, we can offer additional support to qualified students who may
need further support to achieve their degree.

Our students come to Gannon from all over the globe. Once they graduate, they take their knowledge and skills back into their communities to transform lives. We know that we must extend our scholarship reach if we are to stay true to our mission of providing accessible education and invest in today’s most capable students and in our world around us.

Matching the Momentum  

Part of the environment we strive to create for students to flourish includes the funds needed to get to there. As part of the Believe. Inspire. Transform. Gannon’s Next Century campaign we are committed to making sure that people from all backgrounds have access to affordable education. 

That’s why we’re launching two scholarship challenge matches that will immediately propel our next century campaign through increased scholarship support. 

By accepting one of these challenges below, you can live a life of impact, knowing your support doubles the influence you have on our students in need. We invite you to consider making a gift today to help us transform students' lives. 

Next Century Endowed Scholarship Challenge 

Gannon University’s Board of Trustees designated $1 million in funds to be used as a match for endowed scholarship gifts. This challenge will leverage gifts of $25,000 toward endowed scholarships and support additional students every year through merit- and need-based scholarships for students on the Erie and Ruskin campuses. 

Inspiration Scholarship Challenge 

Robert Barker ’72, Gannon Board of Trustee member and chair of the University Advancement committee, personally gifted a $500,000 match to the Inspiration Scholarship Challenge. This challenge will create an additional $1 million by matching donor contributions of $500 up to $10,000 one-to-one. As an alumni of the Delta Sigma Phi fraternity, Barker announced that any gift provided by a Delta Sigma Phi brother will be matched on a two-to-one basis. 

We believe in the possibilities that will come when you join our campaign – the ones that inspire generations of students, faculty and alumni to pursue bold opportunities that transform them and those in their communities across the world.


Early Childhood Education Program

“I am thankful to be an Archbishop Gannon Scholar. The scholarship has given me the opportunity to earn a college education to achieve my goal of becoming a teacher … I’ve had the chance to participate in multiple field experiences since the spring semester of my freshman year of college. This has given me the opportunity to meet and work with teachers in the City of Erie. I am also taking courses to earn a certification in teaching English as a Second Language … The Archbishop Gannon Scholarship has helped to make this possible.”

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