The Marna Pal Memorial Scholarship Fund
The mission of Marna’s Pals is to help New Jersey residents, between the ages of 17 and 24, whose families have been burdened with the difficulties of battling cancer. Marna's Pals hopes to provide relief to those students who are pursuing higher education through the awarding of scholarships.
When our founder, David Pal, was a Junior in high school, his father passed away. He had to face hardship again in Senior year when his mother, Marna, was diagnosed with inoperable, pancreatic cancer. One year later, during David’s first year at Rutgers University, Marna passed away. David was very fortunate in that the University granted him scholarships to pay for his tuition and board. However, not every student whose family is affected by cancer has this same fate. Acknowledging that the cost of tuition continues to rise and that cancer requires a very expensive treatment process, David started Marna’s Pals to help defray educational costs by awarding scholarships.
Scholarship Eligibility and Selection:
Eligibility will be determined based on a combination of several factors including a student’s demonstration of financial hardship, letters of recommendation, the impact cancer has had on his or her family, and his or her merit.
We have a panel of professionals from the local and state community who are responsible for reviewing and selecting the scholars. In addition to the review committee, we also have people that remove all bias from applications as to not influence the review committee in any way. There is a series of rounds when readers rate each applicant and the top applicants move on to the following round. Finally, the review committee will present the board with their scholars and explain why each person was chosen to our Board of Directors.
Our general operating expenses total approximately $1,000 annually, and we have budgeted approximately $10,000 to the expenses associated with fundraising events, such as the Launch Party, a Volleyball Tournament and an Art Show. These expenses are used to bring in additional donations and the events pay for themselves.
Net funds Available:
To date, we have raised approximately $26,000 and are in the process of securing additional corporate and personal donations.
Governance (Board of Directors/Advisory Board, see below)
Currently, there are 8 Directors and 5 Volunteers are working for the organization as unpaid volunteers. These Directors include President, Vice President, Directors of Information, Finance, Fundraising, Scholarship, Organization Development and Public Relations. This is in addition to volunteers working on more specific activities. We are also working with a professional CPA and Financial Planner to help maintain our tax status and manage our money