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Student Thank-You by Anthony Passela

My name is Anthony Passela and I am writing to thank you for your contribution to the Blue White Scholarship Foundation. Your support was instrumental in allowing me to receive this award, and I am beyond grateful for your generosity.

I thought you might like to know more about me and how your donation is helping me pursue my passion at Villanova. I’m a rising Junior from Deer Park, NY majoring in Economics and Political Science. I have a twin brother also in college right now, and a younger brother who will be starting his first year this fall. My parents went through a tumultuous divorce in 2013, and my father stopped paying child support three years ago. It has been tough for my mother to support the three of us on a single income, especially as we enter college.

The past two years have been stressful as she and I have tried to save as much as we could to cover expenses. I worked part-time during the school year and up to fifty hours per week during breaks to help pay for college but even after all this, we still came up short. There were times when I feared I would not be able to complete my degree on time and questioned whether college was worth it.

Left to right: me, my mother Lucia, my rock and source of support); my brother C.J. who always cracks a joke; and my fraternal twin, Nick who I can always turn to him for good brotherly advice

When I found out that I received this scholarship, it was a Friday afternoon and I was sitting at my desk at work. I nearly leaped up in the middle of the office when I read the word “congratulations” on the email notification.

I knew the money awarded by the scholarship would go a long way in helping me complete my education, but it was also more than that. It was validation; I finally felt that all the hard work I had put into paying my way through school was being recognized. It felt like someone believed in me.

This financial cushion provided by Blue White will afford me peace of mind. Instead of worrying about paying next semesters tuition and scrambling to find part-time work, I can begin to take advantage of the rich opportunities a Villanova education provides. I will be able to focus on my studies and pursue internship and research opportunities.

Further, I will be able to dedicate more time to my extracurricular responsibilities such as being President of my fraternity, writing for The Villanovan Newspaper and serving as a board member on the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Academic Reform Committee. Whereas before I felt that I was stretched too thin, now I will be able to take advantage of the unique skill-building opportunities these positions provide.

Ultimately, I am hoping this scholarship will allow me to pursue my dream of working as a portfolio manager. I have been passionate about the field of investing since high school when my business teacher introduced us to “The Stock Market Game,” an online day trading simulation designed for students. Since then I have started day-trading on actual exchanges and this summer began interning at a wealth management firm in Melville, NY (center photo). It has been an exciting experience. I have been given a lot of freedom to explore the different areas of financial services and begin developing the skills and network that will take me far in the industry. Your donation allows me to realize a Villanova education. Thank you again for this tremendous opportunity.—

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