Dr. Gary Lawler, Penn State Hazleton chancellor, recently announced that the campus administration building will be renamed Pasco L. Schiavo Hall in recognition of Schiavo's recent $1 million gift to the campus to create a scholarship endowment for campus students.
Lawler said, "Pasco Schiavo has been a most ardent advocate for Penn State Hazleton for nearly 60 years. This most recent gift shows the depth of his commitment to higher education for students in the Hazleton area and in northeastern Pennsylvania."
"I am very proud and honored," said Schiavo, "that the administration building at Penn State Hazleton will be named for me in recognition of my contributions to the campus. I am very happy that my gifts will enable financially needy students from our community to achieve their academic goals at Penn State Hazleton."
Schiavo currently serves as the campus' chair of the University's For the Future: The Campaign for Penn State Students, an effort directed toward a shared vision of Penn State as the most comprehensive, student-centered research university in America. The University is engaging Penn State's alumni and friends as partners in achieving six key objectives: ensuring student access and opportunity, enhancing honors education, enriching the student experience, building faculty strength and capacity, fostering discovery and creativity, and sustaining the University's tradition of quality. The campaign's top priority is keeping a Penn State degree affordable for students and families. The For the Future campaign is the most ambitious effort of its kind in Penn State's history, with the goal of securing $2 billion by 2014.
Schiavo's affiliation with the campus began in the early 1960s when, as a recent graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School, he began teaching at the campus as an adjunct instructor. This initial involvement with Penn State Hazleton blossomed into a lifelong affiliation with the campus as a volunteer, as a member of the campus advisory board, the Penn State Hazleton Council, of which he has served in leadership positions including president, and as one of the campus' most significant benefactors with his most recent gift leading to the naming of Pasco L. Schiavo Hall. His previous gifts have established three scholarships to benefit local students attending the campus.
The building first served as the centerpiece of the Markle family estate known as Highacres which Penn State purchased in 1948 to become the permanent home of the Hazleton campus. Founded in 1934, the campus had several homes throughout the Hazleton area, ranging from several floors in the Markle Bank Building in downtown Hazleton to locations in several school buildings.
From the beginning, the Markle mansion served as the campus administration building and, at various times, also housed offices, classrooms, the library, health services, the kitchen, and the dining hall. While several other buildings, facilities, and contiguous properties were added to the campus over the years, the administration building has stood as the most recognizable campus structure and one of the first stops for visitors to the campus which now spans 125 acres, 16 buildings and related facilities. Today, the administration building, along with the Nittany Lion replica statue in front of the building, serves as the iconic symbol of Penn State Hazleton.
A ceremony to officially mark the naming of Pasco L. Schiavo Hall is scheduled for Thursday, April 24.