The Power of Endowed Scholarships

To honor his late brother, Paul Corliss wants to make a Monmouth education possible for a new generation of students. He’s already made a difference in the life of one Hawk.

When Trustee Paul Corliss established a distinguished endowed scholarship to honor his late brother, Richard Corliss, he wanted it to make an immediate impact on a Monmouth University student by fully funding it with a gift of $100,000.

At the time of his passing, Richard Corliss had served for 35 years as Time magazine’s most celebrated film critic.

So far, the scholarship has provided significant aid to its first recipient, senior Nick Carlascio, who credits his financial aid as one of the main reasons he could attend Monmouth.

“I don’t think I would have been able to afford this great opportunity if it wasn’t for scholarships,” said Carlascio, who first heard about Hawk TV while on a tour of the school as a prospective student, and later “fell in love with the studio and the people who surrounded it.”

Corliss agrees that Carlascio, the co-founder of the student-run Monmouth Cinema Club, is the perfect choice to receive the Richard Corliss Memorial Endowed Scholarship.

“Nick’s passion for film was evident when I met him,” Paul Corliss said. “His academic and extracurricular achievements as an Honors School student and president of Hawk TV are also very impressive,” he added.

Not content with the already generous funding he provided to establish the Richard Corliss Memorial Endowed Scholarship, Paul Corliss made a personal appeal to titans of the film industry in the months following his brother’s sudden passing.

His outreach for scholarship funds to honor Richard’s legacy and foster academic excellence for a new generation of students paid off handsomely, with an anonymous contribution of $100,000—doubling the already impressive scholarship endowment.

Paul Corliss is deeply moved by the generous tribute to his brother. “The most celebrated directors in American cinema respected Richard, even if his sensibilities sometimes came into conflict with their artistic vision,” he said.

“My brother Richard was well-known in the popular press including The New York Times, National Review, and of course Time magazine, but his appreciation for the power of cinema was also scholarly,” Corliss explained. “Serious practitioners of filmmaking as an art form understood that aspect of his criticism,” he said.

Richard, who earned his master’s degree in film studies from Columbia University, was the author of several acclaimed books including Talking Pictures, a 1974 survey and critical defense of American screenwriters; a 1994 study of Lolita, the Stanley Kubrick adaptation of the Nabokov novel; and more recently, Mom in the Movies: The Iconic Screen Mothers You Love and a Few You Love to Hate, published in 2014.

Earlier in his career, Richard Corliss was the editor of Film Comment, a journal published by the Film Society of Lincoln Center devoted largely to independent films and documentaries.

While the Richard Corliss Memorial Endowed Scholarship has had a major impact on Nick Carlascio, the financial contributions for future students will soon be much greater, thanks to the philanthropic passion that continues to propel Paul Corliss toward his goal of reaching $1 million for the scholarship to help Monmouth University students achieve the same professional heights of his late brother.

Distinguished endowed scholarships can be established at Monmouth University with a gift of $50,000, while endowed scholarships can be created with a gift of $25,000.  Either type of endowment can be established with a pledge that is fulfilled over five years. When fully funded, endowed scholarships provide a perpetual source of financial assistance for students. Learn more about the power of scholarships.