ELFF Awards Inaugural Scholarships to Three Students

The Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation awarded three students with the first The Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation Scholarships, a program inaugurated in 2020 for students interested in potentially pursuing a career in the equipment finance industry. Each student will receive a scholarship of $5,000 for the 2020-2021 academic year. The Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation Scholarship is the newest addition to the ELFF’s Academic Outreach Program.

The scholarship recipients are:

  • Thomas DeFrancesco, a finance and marketing major set to graduate from Seton Hall University in May 2021. He has previously interned at Eastern Funding and plans to enter the finance field upon graduation.
  • Allan Fiallos, an accounting major at Stephen F. Austin University, who is set to graduate in December 2021. Upon graduating, he plans to become a licensed CPA.
  • Yusuf Lewis, a finance major at Morehouse College, who is set to graduate in May 2021. He has interned at Accenture and has exhibited strong entrepreneurial spirit and experience.

“I’m delighted to congratulate Thomas, Allan and Yusuf on receiving their foundation scholarships and on their excellent academic achievements to date,” Scott Thacker, chair of the ELFF and CEO of Ivory Consulting. “All three were chosen based upon their exemplary accomplishments, strong leadership potential and a demonstrated goal to join the finance industry upon graduation. They are the type of people we want to attract to the equipment finance industry, and I wish them well as they finish their academic careers.”

The scholarship program is an outgrowth of the ELFF’s Guest Lecture Program, a long-standing component of the Academic Outreach Program in which industry professionals volunteer to lecture at colleges and universities about the equipment finance industry and its possible career paths. In the past several years, ELFF volunteers have lectured frequently at Stephen F. Austin University. In May 2020, Morehouse College received its first guest lecture, which was the first conducted virtually by the ELFF.

“These inaugural scholarships represent not only the accomplishments of our three recipients, but recognize that the efforts made by our generous guest lecture volunteers are making a difference in introducing students to our industry,” Zack Marsh, chair of the ELFF’s Academic Outreach Committee and CFO of Orion First Financial, said. “The foundation’s Academic Outreach Program plays a critical role in supporting the future talent of equipment finance and the scholarship program is an example of how our industry is paying it forward to make a lasting impact.”

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