By Brittany Schaefer, Staff Writer

Dana A. Hamel is one of the University of New Hampshire’s long-time benefactors, and on Monday he made a generous donation. His $10 million gift will offer scholarship funding for New Hampshire in-state students at UNH.On the university’s website, UNH President Mark Huddleston expressed that “This gift will make an enormous difference in the lives of so many of our students.”

In 2008, Hamel and his family established the Hamel Scholarships and Scholars Program to attract top New Hampshire high school seniors to UNH. Although Hamel himself went to Harvard University, he believes that UNH is the state’s most valuable asset.

The Hamel Scholarship is run through the UNH Honors Program. Its students are recognized for excellence in leadership, community service and academics. The 2013 group of Hamel Scholars consisted of 47 students.

“This gift expands the Hamel Scholars and Hamel Scholarships Program, which directly benefits the state’s best and brightest students,” said UNH’s Director of Media Relations Erika Mantz. “Partnered with the in-state tuition freeze, it provides even more access to higher education for New Hampshire students.”

Timothy Marquis is a senior biomedical science major who is among some of the students that received the Hamel Scholarship. According to the UNH website, he will be the first generation in his family to finish college and pursue an advanced degree.