NIAF News Releases



Contact:   Elissa Ruffino (NIAF) 202/939-3106 or

(WASHINGTON, D.C. – January 6, 2012) Twenty-two university students who reside in New York and New Jersey have received National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) Scholarships. The students from New York include Stephanie LaGumina of New Rochelle, John Scianimanico of LaGrangeville, Daniel Gorman of Pearl River, Stella Fiorenzoli of New York City, Elizabeth D’Arienzo of East Meadow, Michael Colbert of Lindenhurst, Michelle Delgiudice of Little Neck, Brendan Blendell of Albany, Nicholas DeTullio of Rockville Center, Eric Tortorella of Sagaponack, and Nat Guerriera, James Orlando and Anthony Turillo of Brooklyn. The students from New Jersey include Andrew Mascelli of Chatham, Tyler Hayes of Allenhurst, Alessio Mastrandrea of Ocean, Gina Antuno of Hillside, Candyce Pettinari of Clark, Albert Striano of Wyckoff, Vincent Sparacio of Bridgeton, Jamie Roberts of Highland Lakes, and Christiana Fischer of Howell.

"NIAF has awarded $10 million in scholarships and grants across the country since its inception. The NIAF Board of Directors is extremely proud of the high caliber of students and their achievements,” said Matthew J. DiDomenico, Sr., chair of the NIAF scholarship and grants committee and NIAF senior executive vice president.

NIAF celebrates its 37th anniversary this year. The scholarship program has grown from four scholarships of $250 each to nearly 100 annual scholarships that range from $2,000 to $10,000 each in the humanities, medicine, business, engineering, music, Italian language and culture and other specialized fields.

Scholarship winners are selected based on academic merit and are academically outstanding, with an average GPA of 3.95. The average scholarship in the United States was more than $4,000.

In addition to NIAF’s scholarship program, this year NIAF donated funds for the completion of the University of Abruzzo student center module in Italy’s earthquake-stricken region and The College Board Advanced Placement (AP) Italian Language and Culture program. NIAF also sent college students to Italy’s Campania and Umbria regions to participate in the Ambassador Peter F. Secchia Voyage of Discovery program, an educational and cultural initiative, and funded cultural and educational grants.

Contributors to the NIAF scholarship program include corporations, individuals and organizations across the U.S. NIAF will consider matching scholarships with other organizations.

Apply online for a 2012-2013 NIAF scholarship at Application deadline is March 2, 2012.

The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) is a non-profit organization based in Washington, D.C., and dedicated to preserving the heritage of Italian Americans. Visit

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