Students First campaign creates 135 new scholarships

SF State students can count on a boost in scholarship funding thanks to the Students First campaign. Donors, students, faculty and staff gathered on April 24 to celebrate the campaign’s success: raising $14.4 million in just under two years. 

Photo of Vice President for University Advancement Robert Nava

Vice President for University Advancement Robert Nava speaks at the celebration dinner for University Advancement’s successful campaign.

First announced by University Advancement in 2012, Students First aims to offset a decrease in state funding and related increases in tuition by providing more direct support for students. Before beginning his presidency, Leslie Wong and his wife Phyllis contributed an inaugural endowment to the campaign. 

The campaign’s current $14.4 million total surpassed the original $12 million goal. Today, Students First has provided for the creation of 135 new student scholarships. Merit- and need-based scholarships were created, which can be used for tuition, housing, books or other living expenses.

The celebration dinner honored donors Jerold Rosenberg (B.A. ’62) and his wife, Phyllis, whose endowment was instrumental in helping the campaign exceed its goal.

Following the dinner, a number of student scholarship recipients shared their stories. English language and literature student Andrea Guzman discussed the impact of receiving the Jerold Rosenberg Family Scholarship. Martha Joseph, a senior set to graduate in May, spoke about the influence of SF State’s Guardian Scholars Program.

“The success of Students First helps to ensure that SF State can provide access to education for those who wish to learn, regardless of background or financial need,” said Anne Harris, associate vice president for University Development. “This event brought donors together with the students directly benefitting from their generous support.”

Students interested in accessing scholarship information should visit the Financial Aid website:

To learn more about Students First and supporting SF State students, visit:

-- Gianna Devoto


Photo of donor Phyllis Rosenberg and student scholarship recipients Victoria Thai and Andrea Guzman.

Recipients of the Rosenberg Family Scholarship for students of the College of Liberal and Creative Arts, Victoria Thai (right) and Andrea Guzman (middle) greet donor Phyllis Rosenberg (left).

Photo of the President Leslie Wong and alum Jerold Rosenberg.

President Leslie Wong (left) speaks with SF State alum and major contributor to the Students First campaign Jerold Rosenberg (right).