Our Benefactor

Edna Bennett Pierce
Edna Bennett Pierce

A $7 million commitment to Penn State's College of Health and Human Development from alumna Edna Bennett Pierce supports a variety of University and College efforts aimed at improving the health and welfare of children and adolescents. Bennett Pierce directed $4 million of the total gift to an endowment for teaching, research and outreach programs involving children and adolescents. The endowment funds graduate and faculty fellowships, and provide other enhancements to the work of the Prevention Research Center.

A resident of Wilmington, Delaware, and a civic leader and philanthropist, Bennett Pierce is a member of the “Famous 500,” the first freshmen class of women admitted to Penn State following World War II. She earned her bachelor's degree in home economics with an emphasis in child development in 1953. C. Eugene Bennett, who died in 1996, began his doctoral studies in analytical chemistry at Penn State in 1951.

As a result of the generosity of the Bennett Endowment, the Center hosts a program of Graduate Prevention Fellowships and Bennett Prevention Scholars. These fellowships last for one academic year and are awarded on a competitive basis.

The Bennett Endowment also makes possible the annual Bennett Lecture in Prevention Science, the C. Eugene Bennett Chair in Prevention Research, and the Bennett Chair in Prevention Research.