Endowments


An Endowment is an investment that is set up as a permanent fund for the purpose of long-term return. The principle of the fund is not touched. Part of the earned interest is used for the purpose of the fund, while the rest is reinvested into the principle to allow the fund to grow.

FOCUS, The Foundation of Catholics United in Service, is a Harrisburg Diocese Trust Account investment vehicle, which is used for the purpose of holding these funds and creating growth for our future needs. FOCUS was created by Bishop Nicholas C. Datillo as a means for every catholic school within the Diocese to plan for the future needs of their schools.

Endowed gifts can be restricted or unrestricted, designated by the person(s) that wish to establish a fund for the benefit of our school. To create an endowment, a minimum gift of $5,000 is required. If you wish further information on establishing an endowed gift, scholarship fund, honorarium or memorial scholarship fund, please contact the Advancement Office.

The following is the list of current endowment funds and scholarships that have been established to benefit Bishop McDevitt High School and our students. Most of the funds listed are endowed funds and will grow in perpetuity to benefit future students of our school. Gifts can be made to any of these funds at any time. Please contact the Advancement Office for further details at (717) 236-7673.

The Bishop McDevitt High School Scholarship Fund is endowed through the FOCUS fund. The purpose of this fund is to provide financial aid to those students who require tuition assistance.

The Bishop McDevitt High School General Purpose Fund is endowed through the FOCUS fund. The purpose of this fund is to provide monies over the budgeted funds for the needs of the school, whether it is for the building or grounds.

The Tracy Endowment Fund was established from the bequest of David E. Tracy. Its soul purpose is for Tracy Hall maintenance as needed and determined by the principal and the board of education. In the new school the Tracy Endowment is used for upkeep and maintenance of this facility.

The Neil MacDonald Jespersen ’81 Memorial Scholarship Fund is endowed through the FOCUS fund. Created in the memorial of Neil by his parents, the purpose of the fund has preference given to a student who is a parishioner of St. Francis of Assisi Church, Harrisburg, as determined by the Pastor of St. Francis and the Principal of Bishop McDevitt who is in need of tuition assistance.

The Helen M. Bream Memorial Education Fund was established by the Bream family in honor of their wife and mother Helen who was an advocate of education. Helen and her husband John are the parents of a 1953 and 1956 Catholic High/Bishop McDevitt graduate. The purpose of this endowed fund is to provide tuition, scholarships or other assistance to qualified students with financial needs.

The Maria Behr ’78 Memorial Scholarship Fund was established by the Behr Family along with classmates and friends of Maria. Maria was killed in the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center. The purpose of the endowed fund is to provide tuition assistance to an eighth grade graduating student from Holy Family School, Harrisburg, continuing their education at Bishop McDevitt, whose character exemplifies the fruits of the Holy Spirit and displays the desire and potential to succeed in high school. The Principal, in consultation with the teachers of Harrisburg Catholic Elementary School (selecting a Holy Family parishioner), shall determine the recipient of the Maria Behr Memorial Award.

The William J. Knoll Scholarship Fund was endowed in 2004 with FOCUS. Its purpose is for tuition assistance as determined by the Principal.

The Student TWIN TOWERS Publication Fund was established in 2004. Interest disbursed from this fund is set up for the following purpose:

50% towards the moderator’s stipends

50% at the discretion of the moderator together with the Principal

The William F. DiStefano (Steffy) Memorial Buildings and Grounds Fund was established in 2006 to provide funds for the maintenance and upgrade of the buildings and grounds in the football field area as determined by the Principal and the board of education.

The James and Elizabeth O’Leary Memorial Scholarship Fund was established in 2006 by their children, all Catholic High/Bishop McDevitt grads,’53,’56,’60,’62,’66 and ’68. It is an endowed fund with the preference purpose of providing tuition assistance to a Bishop McDevitt High School student who is a parishioner of the Cathedral Parish of St. Patrick as determined by the Principal.

The Sister Rita K. O’Leary ’53 Scholarship Fund was created in 2006 to honor Sr. Rita for her years of service in Catholic education. The interest earned from this scholarship fund will provide tuition assistance for a student attending Bishop McDevitt at the discretion of the Principal.

The Father Daniel J. Mahoney Scholarship Fund was established in 2008 for the sole purpose of providing tuition assistance to a needy student attending Bishop McDevitt High School from Holy Name of Jesus Parish. Father Mahoney was pastor of Holy Name of Jesus Parish for 35 years and taught Latin classes at McDevitt after his retirement.

The Thomas B. ‘39 and Regina Schmidt Family Fund was established in July 2012. The scholarship will be awarded to the girl and boy graduating each year from St. Catherine Laboure School with the highest academic average and attending Bishop McDevitt High School. The second award will be given to a graduating senior in honor of Thomas B. Schmidt, Sr. and will be awarded to a senior for Musical Achievement during his/her four years at McDevitt.

The Byrne and Powers Families Memorial Scholarship was established in October 2013. The purpose of this endowment is to provide financial aid to students, administered in the best interest of the school as determined by the Principal or his/her designee.

Father John A. Acri ’52 Scholarship Fund was established in January 2014. The fund was set up to provide Tuition Assistance to any child that has a proven need for financial assistance to attend Bishop McDevitt High School. The student receiving the scholarship must be a practicing Catholic who attends Mass and is approved by the Principal. 

The Larry Bekelja ’59 Memorial Scholarship Fund was established in January 2014. This scholarship will be distributed in two parts.  This first distribution will provide tuition assistance for a current student who has financial need, maintains a 3.7 or higher, and is very involved in the Bishop McDevitt community through clubs and/or sports.  The Bekelja family will consult with the Director of Finance, the Principal of Bishop McDevitt and any other administrator in order to select students who will be invited to write an essay to earn the scholarship.  The Bekelja family will read the essays and determine the final recipient.

The second part of the scholarship will be given to one graduating boy and/or girl who have maintained a 3.5 GPA or higher, played two sports all four years at Bishop McDevitt and participated in clubs.  Money will be given to a graduating senior boy and/or girl who meet these criteria.

The Agnes ’36 and Andrew Frankovic Memorial Scholarship Fund was opened in May 2014. The fund was set up to provide Tuition Assistance to any child that has a proven need for financial assistance to attend Bishop McDevitt High School. 

The Agnes ’36 and Andrew Frankovic Building Fund was opened in May 2014. This fund will be used solely to benefit future building improvements.

The Sacred Heart of Jesus Scholarship Fund was established in April 2014. This endowment will provide tuition assistance to Bishop McDevitt H.S., and is awarded to a child that has the desire and merit to pursue a college education after high school, but does not have the financial means to attend Bishop McDevitt.

The scholarship will be awarded to a child that lives within the historical boundaries of the old Sacred Heart of Jesus parish that served the Catholic community in South Harrisburg. The tuition assistance will be provided for the duration of the child’s high school years, providing that they maintain good to excellent academic achievement (above 2.75 GPA), and they are involved in extracurricular activities at McD.

The Mary Elaine Figler ’70 Witmer Memorial Scholarship was opened in June 2014. This scholarship is restricted to seniors only who plan to go on to medical school. The student receiving this scholarship must complete a 300 word essay describing Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. The donor wants the student to understand the disease his wife died from in hopes they might one day want to do research to find a cure for this rare disease and should a cure be found, other related diseases. All students interested in the scholarship will write the essay. The school will narrow the recipients down to two and let the family choose the “winner.”

The Dr. Rod Mortel Scholarship Fund was opened in September 2014. This endowment scholarship will provide tuition assistance for a current student who is performing well in school and has a financial need for tuition assistance to attend Bishop McDevitt High School. The student will be selected by the principal.

The Daniel L. and Ann Manganelli ’71 Delp Scholarship Endowment Fund was established in September 2014. This scholarship will be restricted to a sophomore, junior or senior who shows consistent improvements in academics, displays a spirit of desire to improve one’s academics, has a gpa of 2.5 or above and is active in two or more extra-curricular activities at school. Students will write an essay on what it means to them to have family commitment and support in obtaining a Catholic Education from BMHS.

To learn more about establishing an Endowment for Bishop McDevitt High School or to make a gift to a current endowment, please contact Cheri Comasco, Director of Advancement 717-236-7973 ext 2133 or ccomasco@bishopmcdevitt.org.