Sunday Tapestry Tip Off: Coach Patrick Chambers, Mike Missanelli & Alums Team for April 15 Philly Art Benefit for New PSU Emergency Student Loan Fund

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Penn State Alumni and the University have teamed up to develop a new concept for emergency student loans as the national student loan crisis deepens. The "Hand in Hand" artwork being revealed Sunday is part of the fund raising campaign that to date has raised more than $200k for students in serious financial need.

Head Basketball Coach Patrick Chambers will lead an all-star roster – including sports radio host Mike Missanelli (class of ’77) - starting at 4 p.m., Sunday, April 15, at the Rosenfeld Gallery (113 Arch St.) in Old City for the official launch of the “Hand In Hand” art project for the benefit of the new, alumni-created Penn State Student Emergency Loan Fund. A special awards presentation is scheduled for 5:00 p.m.

Coach Chambers, in his first year at Penn State after a distinguished career as head coach at Boston University and an assistant at Villanova, brings his trademark, high on-court energy to the breakthrough low-interest loan Fund for students facing unforeseen financial hardship that jeopardizes their continued enrollment. The micro loan Fund has raised more than $200,000 and it is expected to significantly increase through sales of the limited edition Hand in Hand tapestry to be revealed and exhibited at the Gallery. The artwork is the creative inspiration of Lanny Sommese, Penn State’s legendary design head.

“I am proud to be part of this team of alums, including Mike Missanelli, faculty, especially Prof. Sommese, Langhorne Carpet, and the University administration, supporting what is believed to be the first program of its kind in the country,” said Chambers. “The need is great and, as always, our alumni network can be counted on to help students who need a hand with their finances to stay in school and graduate.”

Tom Sharbaugh (PSU, ’73), founder of the Fund, said Coach Chambers is a great asset on many levels. “As one of 12 children, he could instantly relate to the pressures families face when it comes to being able to pay for a college education, even at a state-affiliated college. It shocks many to learn that for a Pennsylvania resident, it now costs nearly $30,000 a year for tuition, room, board, and books at Penn State. We can’t do much about that, but we can help them make ends meet to they can graduate. “

The legendary Langhorne Carpet Mill weaves the limited edition tapestry on its Jacquard Wilton looms using the finest wool. Prof. Sommese, who played Division One basketball, will be on hand at the Gallery, along with displays of many of his iconic posters, including Arts Festival works..

For more information: Tom Sharbaugh (215-963-5004/ (sharbaugh(at)morganlewis(dot)com, Steph Rosenfeld (215.514.4101/steph(at)idadvisors(dot)com), Brian Siegrist (814.865.1757 /for Coach Chambers) tbs1(at)psu(dot)edu.

The PSU Emergency Student Loan Fund

1.    To date more than $200,000 has been donated to the new Fund.
2.    Donations have ranged from a few dollars to $5,000.
3.    The first loans for "emergency" aid under the Fund have been made to students; loans range from $1500-$3000.
4.    Students from Main campus and all 23 Commonwealth campuses are eligible.
5.    More than 75 percent of all undergrads receive some form of student.
6.     Many students exhaust traditional Federal and State aid forms and the new Fund provides a viable, affordable option in the event of an emergency.
7.    High interest bank credit cards, payday loans, Plasma banks, are still less desirable options students turn to (and that we'd like to see become obsolete).
8.     In-state room + board + tuition + books is $26,500 and increases annually.
9.     Average student debt upon graduation from PSU is $33,530.
10.     Alumni developed the Fund, believed to be the first of its kind in the United Sates. The Office of Student Aid at the University administers it.

Source: Penn State Office of Student Aid

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