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Cepeda donates $25,000 to endow Penn State Alumni Association career mentoring and support programs, individuals

By: Kendall Brodie, Alumni Association Strategic Communications Intern 


UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. (Oct 17, 2016) — The Penn State Alumni Association has received a $25,000 donation from an alumnus to cultivate and recognize individuals and organizations committed to providing alumni with career mentoring, support, and job opportunities.


The Martin R. Cepeda, Jr. Program Endowment and Award for Alumni Career Advancement and Development—established by Martin R. Cepeda, Jr. of Jersey City, N.J.—will honor and fund an individual or organization that exhibits outstanding commitment to Penn State alumni in career advancement. Income from Cepeda’s endowment—currently set at 4.5 percent or $1,125—will be directed toward the awarded individual or organization.


“The Penn State Alumni Association helps our students and alumni tap into the most powerful network of alumni in the world through our alumni career services program,” Paul Clifford, Alumni Association CEO, said. “Through his generosity, Martin R. Cepeda, Jr. is assisting the Alumni Association in ensuring all Penn State alumni achieve their goals and feel empowered in their career searches and endeavors.”


Cepeda graduated from Penn State’s Smeal College of Business in 2005. He has since enjoyed successful careers in working for companies like Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca, for which he is currently director of human resources. He also serves as an Alumni Association Executive Board Member on the Volunteer Support Committee.


“I want to help people who are in the same shoes I once was, or have the same affinity for Penn State,” Cepeda said. “It’s all about paying it forward and helping others get to where they want to be in their careers.”


In addition to highlighting and nurturing a relationship with a person or group that demonstrates extensive support for career development, Cepeda’s endowment will also benefit the Alumni Association’s Career Services and Volunteer Awards Program.


“The University continues to graduate more and more students each year, and it is our job at the Alumni Association to meet the needs and wants of our alumni,” Clifford said. “More of our alumni will be seeking careers, and we strive to match their questions with the career tools, mentoring, and opportunities that will help them succeed.” 


About the Penn State Alumni Association

The Penn State Alumni Association is the largest dues-paying alumni association in the world with more than 176,000 members. Established in 1870, the Alumni Association strives to connect alumni to the University and to each other, provide valuable services to members and support the University’s mission of teaching, research and service. For more information, visit

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