Jeopardy's Alex Trebek donates $1 million to North Harlem students

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Wednesday, October 7, 2015
Alex Trebek gives Fordham student from Harlem scholarship
Diana Williams has more

NORTH HARLEM, NY (WABC) -- This popular game show host has endowed a $1 million scholarship at Fordham University.

The answer is: Who is Alex Trebek?

Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek is donating $1 million to endow a scholarship for undergraduates at Fordham.

On Wednesday, Trebek will present the first Alex Trebek Endowed Scholarship to Estefania Cruz, a history major at Fordham College at Rose Hill.

The Alex Trebek Endowed Scholarship will provide financial aid support to current, full-time and/or part-time students who live in North Harlem.

"It is a welcome gift, but not a surprising one," said university president Rev. Joseph M. McShane. "Mr. Trebek has a long history of giving where the need is greatest."

Trebek supports a number of charities and educational organizations, including the National Geographic Society, the USO, World Vision and WonderWork.

The first scholarship recipient, Estefania Cruz, commutes to Fordham from her family's home in Harlem, where she tutors low-income students.

After she graduates in 2017 Cruz is already planning on graduate school for a degree in clinical social work.

"I hope to help people, especially the most vulnerable, overcome serious social problems, so they can lead productive and fulfilling lives," she said.

Trebek and his wife, Jean, have two children: Emily, Loyola Marymount University Class of 2015, and Matthew, who graduated from Fordham College at Rose Hill.

"My son's career at the University not only sharpened his intellect, but helped him develop as a leader and a well-rounded person," said Trebek.

He says he hopes that the scholarship helps many other deserving students to have a 'transformational experience.'

Trebek has hosted Jeopardy! for 32 years, winning five Daytime Emmy awards for Outstanding Game Show Host and a Peabody Award.