Once again this year, a group of graduating high school seniors will be getting some help paying for college from one of the area’s best-known philanthropists.
Denise DeBartolo-York and her husband John awarded scholarships to eight local students Thursday.
The Edward J. DeBartolo Scholarship Foundation has been in existence for 16 years. The program was started by the York family to honor the memory of Denise’s father and mall developer.
Debartolo-York said the idea of helping students pay for college started long ago.
“It had to be over 40 years. It was a group of guys, mostly Italian, they started the Italian Scholarship League,” said Debartolo-York. “A lot of them immigrated from Italy and knew education evened the playing field.”
Over the past 16 years, the Scholarship Foundation has awarded more than $550,000 to area students.