About the Endowment

The Class of 1961 has a history of Wows! From the Kingston Trio to our 20th Reunion Class of 61 Scholarship, our ’61 Professors and our Tressolini Lectures we did it our way.

Come 2006, with our 50th Reunion approaching, we started a website that recognized our legacies and recognized there was still much to do.

We really adopted the class of 2011- 24 men of 61 strong with every student wearing 611 We are One brown and white bracelets. We met frequently with them and challenged the class to show its passion for Lehigh with the 611 Challenge Scholarship with a $1500 award and a plaque of recognition.

The scholarship continued into 2019 with Covid interrupting in 2020.

Working with the university during this period it was determined that an endowed scholarship would be the right solution to continue the 61 spirit and do it as partners with our friends from 2011.

Quotes from the most recent winners tells us we are on the right track.

Olivia Lee ‘20

“It was so meaningful to meet the alumni from the classes of 1961 and 2011, and bond over our shared love and pride for Lehigh. It was heart-warming to see that their Lehigh pride remains so strong today; they set a standard that I will aim to uphold when I am a Lehigh alum.”


Ryan Ferdinand ‘’21

“It is a great honor to have received the 611 Challenge Award from distinguished Lehigh alumni!  The award reaffirms that my contributions to the greater Lehigh community have an impact and are appreciated.  It is my goal to someday embody the same ideals as the 611 award committee by being involved, gracious, and accomplished.”


Winnie Gu ‘19

“I’m really grateful to be recognized for this award. I am now involved in the Graduate Student Senate, on the Faculty Committee on Global Affairs. Receiving the 611 award definitely made me feel that I was doing the right thing on campus and encouraged me to stay involved as a graduate student. It’s inspiring to hear stories from alumni of the classes of 1961 and 2011. Lehigh wouldn’t be Lehigh without alumni like you who are living the legacy.”

Our gut feeling simply says if we get this response from this relatively small award, a real scholarship will produce even better results from our future awardees. As written the new 611 Merit Scholarship is available to second year students or better thereby aiding juniors and seniors. Applicants must submit normal scholarship requirements plus an elaboration on their service to Lehigh together with a commitment to continue that service into the future as an alumni. In short, we want the Lehigh spirit and passion of 1961 to remain where gratitude turns into action for the alma mater.

Many of us have favored Lehigh with time and treasure often times inspired by Lehigh 61’s tireless class agent, Joe King. Joe could never thank Lehigh enough for his scholarship. Brown blood through white veins aptly describes his chemistry. There are so many more 61 stories of passion and spirit for Lehigh that those who follow can perpetuate through the 611 Merit Scholarship Endowment.