17:02 PM

Scholarship Fuels Veteran's Potential

Junior business major and Marine Corps veteran Mario Clay is the recipient of a $10,000 scholarship donated by LPL Financial Charitable Foundation, which is the single largest scholarship granted to any student in CSUSM’s 22-year history.For the 2012/13 academic year, the LPL Financial Charitable Foundation donated a total of $32,000 to five College of Business Administration (CoBA) students ranging from $3,000 to $10,000.Creating OpportunitiesThe Foundation’s scholarship gifts are ensuring that deserving students have access to the transformational power of a college degree. Students may use the awarded funds to pay for tuition, purchase books or educational equipment, or cover living expenses.“This scholarship is a big deal to me, as it goes well beyond being a monetary donation,” said Clay. “It reaffirms the belief I have that hard work pays off, and that persistence pays in many ways.”Clay’s five-year service as an electrical equipment repair specialist in the Marines included two tours of duty in Iraq. After he was honorably discharged, he decided to pursue higher education, becoming the first person in his family to attend college.  While attending a career training institute and then community college, Clay juggled attending classes and studying with a night job and volunteering. Particularly passionate about helping fellow veterans, he served as a class military liaison, vice president of the Veterans Club and veteran peer advisor, assisting former military personnel as they transitioned into life as a student. Fueling PotentialSince 2010, LPL Financial has awarded $81,000 in scholarships to 17 Cal State San Marcos students. Recipients must be a junior or senior and enrolled as a business major with a 3.25 cumulative grade-point average.“As a firm we are dedicated to helping individuals find the right path in order to achieve their aspirations in life,” commented Robert Moore, LPL Financial’s president and chief operating officer who also served in the scholarship selection process. “The LPL Financial Charitable Foundation is pleased to offer scholarships to these bright and talented students.”“[This] scholarship motivates me to finish what I started and it gives me hope,” noted Clay. “LPL Financial is highly regarded for awarding such impactful scholarships. Their outreach is an indication of the type of organization they are, [as well as] their level of commitment to their community.”Learn more about available scholarships, visit CSUSM Scholarship Opportunities.