Paul Bonenfant Scholarship fundraising exceeds goal

Jan. 9, 2013
The OSA Foundation (OSAF) reports that fundraising for the Paul A. Bonenfant Memorial Scholarship has exceeded its goal of $190,000.

The OSA Foundation (OSAF) reports that fundraising for the Paul A. Bonenfant Memorial Scholarship has exceeded its goal of $190,000.

The need-based scholarship program enables undergraduates enrolled in engineering or physical science programs to attend semester-abroad programs offered via their schools. The OSAF established the scholarship program in 2011 in honor of Bonenfant, who passed away in 2011 (see “OSA scholarship honors Paul Bonenfant”). Bonenfant had a successful and varied career in optical communications, which included positions at optical communications companies as well as in finance; he was an analyst at Morgan Keegan at the time of his death. He also was a member of the technical program committee for the Optical Fiber Communication Conference and Exposition/National Fiber Optic Engineers Conference (OFC/NFOEC), co-sponsored by the OSA.

While contributions to the scholarship fund came from a variety of sources, key contributions came from an anonymous donor who matched donations up to $62,000 and a series of 5K runs organized by Kelly Skelton (son of Lightwave media consultant Kathleen Skelton), telecom marketing agency Pacific Bridge Marketing, and OSAF staff (see "Lightwave helps OSA Foundation scholarship cross finish line with 5K run").

“We’re incredibly grateful to our industry peers, corporate donors, and individual supporters that have contributed to the success of this campaign,” said Michael Morris, OSA Foundation Board chair. “The Bonenfant Scholarship will allow the next generation of researchers, engineers, and physicists to gain important international experience and connect with industry leaders in the global optics community as they prepare for their professional careers.”

The first scholarship will be awarded in March at OFC/NFOEC 2013 in Anaheim, CA. More information about the Bonenfant Scholarship, including the ability to make a secure online donation, can be found on the OSA Foundation website. Those who register for OFC/NFOEC 2013 also can include a donation to the scholarship during the online registration process.

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