Scholarship Fund Established Honoring Slain Rutgers Student
Wednesday, April 20, 2011 • 4:23pm
NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - A series of events is planned to launch a scholarship fund honoring a Rutgers University student slain in March.
The Pamela Sue Schmidt Award for Outstanding Service to the Community is being established at the Rutgers School of Management and Labor Relations to honor the memory of the senior from Warren Township.
Schmidt, 22, was found dead on Mar. 13, at the Cranford home of William Parisio, 22, also a Rutgers student who is charged in the slaying. She was said to be romantically linked to Parisio.
A committee including the Schmidt family, friends, and Rutgers faculty and administrators are launching a fund-raising campaign to endow an annual scholarship to be awarded to a Rutgers undergraduate who embodies Schmidt’s commitment to both community service and academic achievement.
Initial fund-raising events include a series of Restaurant Nights from which a portion of proceeds will benefit the scholarship fund. The first is scheduled at Sally G’s on Wednesday, April 20, and the second at Silk Road on Wednesday, May 25. Both establishments are in Warren Township, Somerset County, where the Schmidt family resides.
A “Movie Night” is planned for Friday, April 29, at the Rutgers Labor Education Center auditorium, followed by a Poker Night on Sunday, May 1, at the University of Delaware, where Pam’s sister Stephanie is a freshman.
Also planned is a walkathon on Saturday, June 11, at Schmidt’s alma mater, Watchung Hills Regional High School in Warren, where her brother Michael is a freshman.
The committee also will sell bracelets emblazoned with the inscription “Fearless, Selfless, Ambitious,” which those who knew Schmidt said best embodies her spirit.
Schmidt is credited with putting together a Rutgers team to compete in the Society for Human Resource Management collegiate competition at the University of Rochester.
"Pam was a very motivated and ambitious individual,” said Katie Stevens, who led the Rutgers team to the Rochester competition the week after Schmidt’s funeral. “She was very passionate about the human resources field and was always going above and beyond her studies to become more involved in extracurricular activities.
“She focused her extra time on attending conferences, events, and informational sessions,” Stevens said. “She brought people together through her positive energy and wonderful ability to connect with others. Pam was an inspiration to all of us and gave us motivation to succeed."
“Pamela touched the lives of hundreds of people, always seeking ways to bring together family and friends and to assist others in need,” said David Finegold, dean of the Rutgers School of Management and Labor Relations, in announcing the scholarship. “She took particular joy in finding scholarships to help fellow students.”
Schmidt’s mother, Marcy Schmidt, said her daughter would have been proud both of the award and the effort her life inspired. “Pam was so proud when she was accepted into Rutgers top-ranked master’s degree program in human resource management,” she said.
Lisa Schur, associate professor of Labor Studies and Employment Relations at Rutgers who organized the Movie Night fund-raiser, said, “When I first met her at the start of our Perspectives in Labor Studies class in September, my immediate - and regrettable - impression was that someone so bubbly and out-going would probably not be a very serious student. I was quickly proved mistaken.
“While Pam had a lot of friends and interests outside of class, she was a serious student who was engaged in the class material and passionate about labor and human resource issues.”
Tax-deductible donations for the Pamela Sue Schmidt Scholarship can be sent directly to the Rutgers University Foundation, c/o Meera Ananth, School of Management and Labor Relations, Rutgers University, 94 Rockafeller Road, Piscataway, N.J. 08854-8054.
Checks should be made payable to the Pamela Schmidt Scholarship/RU Foundation. Donations can also be made online at smlr.rutgers.edu/Schmidt.