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LEWISTON – Niagara University has announced a new endowed scholarship in honor of its former president, the Rev. Joseph L. Levesque, noting his “lasting, positive impact on the school.”

Levesque, the 25th president of Niagara University, served for 13 years, stepping down July 31, 2013. He is currently serving as interim president of St. John’s University.

The new scholarship will be available to first-year Niagara University students who live in a rural community in any of the eight Western New York counties. The goal is to raise $500,000 for the scholarship fund, and the first award is expected to be made available in the fall semester of 2016.

Three donors have already joined to contribute a total of $350,000 to the Levesque scholarship fund. They are Denver-based CoBank; the bank’s CEO Bob Engel, a 1975 alumnus of Niagara University, and his wife, Lynda; and Farm Credit East, a partner of the bank, based in Connecticut.

Those interested in contributing to the Rev. Joseph L. Levesque, C.M., Endowed Scholarship should contact Niagara University’s Office of Institutional Advancement at 286-8791.