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February 5, 2015

Bradford scholarships established

Pitt-Bradford’s computer information systems and technology (CIS&T) program has four new $5,000 freshman merit scholarships for majors.

Two of the $5,000 scholarships were endowed by UPB President Emeritus Richard E. and Ruth McDowell and two additional scholarships of equal size were matched by UPB.

The McDowells contributed more than $250,000 to endow the scholarships, which will be named in honor of campus supporters Barbara and Lester Rice and Ruth McDowell’s parents, Alice and Thomas Moriarty.

Minimum requirements for the scholarships are a 3.25 cumulative high school GPA in college-preparatory classes and SAT scores of 600 in math and 500 in verbal.

Established five years ago, the CIS&T program has grown to 50 majors at the campus of 1,500 students and has placed graduates in jobs with starting salaries generally ranging from $45,000 to $55,000. Graduates also have excellent long-term career growth prospects, said Don Lewicki, program director.

The U.S. Department of Labor predicts a growth rate of more than 25 percent for computer systems analysts through 2022. Those jobs, department statistics say, had a median pay of $79,680 in 2012 and require a bachelor’s-level education.

Lester Rice is the chairman emeritus and former CEO of KOA Speer Electronics, the successor to AircoSpeer, and a supporter of UPB. He began his career in electronics with the U.S. Navy, where he attended Electronics Technical School. Later, he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in electronics engineering from the University of Michigan.

Thomas Moriarty was an electrician who worked for many years at AircoSpeer maintaining its electrical systems.

For more information,  contact Alexander Nazemetz, director of admissions, at or 814/362-7555.