Centofanti Foundation donates $1 million to YSU

Centofanti Foundation donates $1 million to YSU. Pictured here with Youngstown State University President Cynthia Anderson.

YSU announced today that the James and Coralie Centofanti Charitable Foundation has donated $1 million to YSU to establish the James and Coralie Centofanti Center of Health and Welfare for Vulnerable Populations. Pictured from the left are Mark Graham, executive vice president of Farmers National Bank and a member of the Foundation’s Distribution Committee; Joseph Centofanti, brother of James and a member of the Distribution Committee; Carol Potter, director of Financial Development and Marketing for the YMCA and a member of the Distribution Committee; David Centofanti, the Centofantis’ son and a member of the Distribution Committee; YSU President Cynthia E. Anderson; Dante Zambrini, retired superintendent of Canfield Schools and a member of the Distribution Committee; and Joe Mosca, dean of the Bitonte College of Health and Human Services at YSU.

The James and Coralie Centofanti Center of Health and Welfare for Vulnerable Populations will be created at Youngstown State University under a $1 million gift announced today at a campus news conference.

The new Center, funded with a gift from the James and Coralie Centofanti Charitable Foundation, will help expand and improve the ability of the YSU Bitonte College of Health and Human Services to positively impact health and welfare challenges throughout the region.

“I want to thank the Centofanti Foundation for this generous gift,” YSU President Cynthia E. Anderson said. “But even more important, I want to thank and commend the Foundation for its support in improving the health and welfare of our community.”

James Centofanti of Canfield, a successful business owner, philanthropist and horseman, died in 2010. His wife, Coralie, died in 1999. Centofanti was a long-time member of the Board of Directors of Farmers National Bank in Canfield, a generous supporter of numerous educational and community-based activities in and around the Canfield area, and the recipient of numerous awards for his humanitarian efforts.

“Jim always had a soft spot for the underdog and the underprivileged, and it was reflected during his life through his generosity and his hands-on involvement in working to improve the lives of people, especially those with special needs,” said Mark Graham, executive vice president of Farmers National Bank and chair of the Distribution Committee of the Centofanti Foundation. “He would be very proud to have his family’s name associated with a Center that focuses on improving the health and welfare of people throughout the Mahoning Valley.”

The new James and Coralie Centofanti Center of Health and Welfare for Vulnerable Populations at YSU will provide student scholarships, internship stipends, graduate assistantships, faculty research grants and workforce development initiatives designed to evaluate and respond to the needs of the region’s health and human service organizations and agencies, said Joe Mosca, dean of the YSU Bitonte College of Health and Human Services.

“The Center will enhance the level of engagement between our students, our faculty and professionals employed in health and human service organizations throughout our region,” Mosca said.

The Center’s functions will include:

  • The Centofanti Symposium, featuring nationally-recognized speakers on topics regarding the needs of vulnerable populations.
  • Undergraduate and graduate scholarships for students in the Bitonte College of Health and Human Services pursuing careers that will impact at-risk populations in the region and beyond.
  • Undergraduate stipends and graduate assistantships for students engaged in service or research addressing health and human services concerns experienced by regional organizations and/or their service recipients.
  • Support for faculty, including research grants and educational seminars.
  • Educational training and workforce development to engage YSU faculty and students in local social service and nonprofit agencies conducting research and expanding their effectiveness in working with at-risk/vulnerable population groups.

The Bitonte College of Health and Human Services offers more than 25 majors in criminal justice, health professions, human ecology, human performance and exercise science, nursing, physical therapy and social work.  The College is committed to preparing students for competent entry level and advanced practice employment in the health and human services professions. For more information, visit the Bitonte College of Health and Human Services online.

About Youngstown State University
Youngstown State University is a comprehensive urban research university that offers nearly 14,000 students more than 135 undergraduate and graduate programs. YSU is backed by a strong tradition of teaching, scholarship and public service. As a major educational and economic development resource in the region, the University is known for its focus on academic research and creative programs that transform its students into successful professionals, scholars and leaders. Located in the heart of the Tech Belt between Cleveland and Pittsburgh, YSU provides opportunities for students to actively participate with accomplished faculty, often in one-on-one settings, on advanced research and creative collaborations. The 145-acre campus includes high-tech classrooms, state-of-the-art labs and performance facilities, a variety of on-campus housing options and recreational facilities among the best in the nation.