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Treasurer Torsella Kicks-off Keystone Scholars Launch Tour With Hospital Visit

Harrisburg, PA – Pennsylvania Treasurer Joe Torsella today was joined by key county partners including Senators Kim Ward and Pat Stefano, and a representative from Senator Jim Brewster’s office along with Representatives Eric Nelson, Mike Reese, and Justin Walsh, to highlight treasury’s new scholarship grant program, Keystone Scholars. Designed to help encourage higher education aspirations and to help families start saving early, Torsella launched the Keystone Scholars program to provide a $100
scholarship grant to every child born or adopted in Pennsylvania to be used towards college and career expenses. A six-county demonstration project—financed through private funds—is available now; proposed legislation would make the scholarship grant program available to every child statewide.

“As a parent, one of the greatest joys is to watch that new baby grow, and think about what their future could look like. But it can be hard to know where to start saving to make that future possible,” said Torsella. “Keystone Scholars helps us get started on that path together. I’m so proud to join our Westmoreland County partners to launch this program, and to begin our investment in Pennsylvania’s kids right here.”

As part of Treasurer Torsella’s kick-off in Westmoreland County, he held a press conference at the County Courthouse with local partners and toured Excela Health’s Westmoreland Hospital. Treasury’s growing list of partners in the county includes State legislators, Westmoreland County, Excela Health, United Way of Southwestern PA, the Westmoreland Hospital Auxiliary, the Fred Rogers Center at Saint Vincent College, and the Westmoreland County Intermediate Unit.

The hospital visit included a tour of the Family Additions Maternity Center at Excela. During the tour, the Treasurer had the opportunity to meet a family that recently welcomed a baby. Before leaving the hospital, all families receive registration information for the Keystone Scholars scholarship grant program.

Treasurer Torsella unveiled the Keystone Scholars program in February 2018, which included the announcement of a demonstration project for all families living in Delaware, Elk, Indiana, Luzerne, Mifflin, and Westmoreland counties. Treasury raised $2.25 million in private funds to finance the demonstration project so that every baby born or adopted from January 1, 2018, through December 31, 2019, within the six-counties will be eligible for a $100 scholarship grant. Families have until the child’s
first birthday to claim the Keystone Scholarship.

The scholarship grant will grow through investment. Families have until their child turns 29 years old to use the funds. The scholarship grant – and any additional college savings each family saves by opening a PA 529 account – can be used for any qualified higher education expense at an approved institution of higher education, including trade schools, vocational programs, community colleges, and universities in
or outside Pennsylvania.

All funds for the demonstration project are coming from philanthropic sources that include the Richard King Mellon Foundation, the Henry L. Hillman Foundation, the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency Foundation, and the Neubauer Family Foundation. The demonstration project also includes The National Philanthropic Trust and research support from the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education and Duke University’s Common Cents Lab.

Families can pre-register their child for Keystone Scholars at by clicking on Sign Up. Once they have received their child’s birth certificate, they can log back in to finish their registration. Keystone Scholarships are available to children born in 2018 and 2019 to families living in
the six demonstration project counties.

For more information on the Keystone Scholars program visit and be sure to stay up-to-date with all of the department’s news on Facebook and Twitter.

Media contact: Heidi Havens, 717-787-2991 or

Pennsylvania Treasury Department
Joe Torsella, State Treasurer | Facebook | Twitter

Funds invested in your Keystone Scholars Account remain under the sole custody of the Pennsylvania Treasury Department (Treasury) until they are used for the purposes of paying for qualified higher education expenses. A list of qualified higher education expenses may be found at If not used by the beneficiary’s 29th birthday, the funds will be returned to Treasury. These funds will be invested in the Pennsylvania 529 Guaranteed Savings Plan (GSP). More information may be found at No additional funds may be contributed to your Keystone Scholars Account. To open a PA 529 GSP or PA 529 Investment Plan account, please visit us at

The Pennsylvania Treasury is an independent department of state government led by the state treasurer, who is elected every four years. The department's primary duty is to safeguard and manage the state's public funds. It invests state money to generate income on behalf of the citizens of Pennsylvania, reviews and processes payments
for state government custodian of more than $100 billion in state funds. Key Treasury programs include Unclaimed Property, PA 529 College Savings Program, PA ABLE Savings Program, and the Board of Finance and Revenue. To learn more visit