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$650K From Estate of High School Sweethearts to Benefit Morristown Students

New scholarship fund for those interested in teaching will have 'major impact' on students lives.

The Morris Educational Foundation was the bearer of good news on Tuesday as they announced the receipt of its largest individual gift in the history of the school, $650,000, for the establishment of an endowed scholarship.

The donation came from the estate of Carl George and Shirley L. Eklund, alumni of Morristown High School Class of 1939. The high school sweethearts willed money for the establishment of The Eklund Scholarship Fund, the largest endowed scholarship fund in support of Morristown High School students.The scholarship will be awarded to a junior or senior student who demonstrates financial need and eagerness to pursue a career in teaching, preferably at the secondary level.

"We are thrilled to be the recipient of this amazing gift," said Molly Servais, Chairperson of the Morris Educational Foundation. "We are committed to growing resources that impact the livesof our students and this includes our scholarship endowment."

Applicants are encouraged to apply in their junior year, as the award of this scholarship will impact their college decision-making process.

"The Eklund Scholarship Fund is the largest single gift ever made to the MEF and we are honored to administer this scholarship in perpetuity," Servais said."Philanthropic giving plays a critical role in advancing the work that we do here at the Morris Educational Foundation."

"We are grateful for our district partner, the Morris Educational Foundation, who continues to attract donations in support of our students and programs," said Dr. Thomas Ficarra, Superintendent of the Morris School District. "We are pleased to collaborate with the MEF on several initiatives that have great impact on the lives of our students."

Ficarra mentioned the two decades the MEF has been working with the district. 

"We would not be the same district without them," Ficarra said. 

According to Servais this scholarship came to be, in part, because of the partnership and strong relationship with the 129-year-old Alumni Association.

The Eklund Scholarship Fund represents a life-changing opportunity for a qualified student who will pursue a career in teaching," said Mark Manning, Principal of Morristown High School."Because this scholarship is designated specifically for a future teacher who over time willtouch the hearts and minds of thousands of students, this gift will benefit generations to come."

The new Eklund Scholarship Fund will be available in spring 2014 and it will be awarded to a qualified student who requires financial assistance in order to pursue a career in teaching. More information and applications for prospective students will be available after Feb. 1 in the Guidance Office of Morristown High School. The student will be selected by the Morris Educational Foundation's Eklund Scholarship Committee.

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