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When the Ateneo de Manila University began in 1859 as a public primary institution administered by Spanish Jesuits, it received the support of the City of Manila. Tuition was free.

Through the years, however, the rising costs of education have made the Ateneo de Manila University one of the most expensive schools in the country. This has prevented many scholars from entering the university and helping energize its intellectual life.

Aware of this problem, a group of Ateneo alumni and friends spearheaded a fund campaign in 1974 aimed at helping the Ateneo return to the tradition of a free, scholar-filled school. The fund drive proved successful, and in a few months nearly P6 million had been contributed.

With these funds, the Ateneo Scholarship Foundation started giving scholarship grants at the beginning of school year 1975-76.

On July 3, 1974, the Foundation was certified by the National Science Development Board as a tax-exempt foundation. The by-laws of the corporation were filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on July 11, 1974.

Incorporators of the Foundation were Messrs. Antonio V. Ayala; Martin P. Bonoan; Cesar Concio, Jr.; Jose F.S. Bengzon, Jr.; and Rev. Thomas R. Fitzpatrick, S.J.

Its first officers included Antonio V. Ayala, president; Martin P. Bonoan, vice president; Jose F.S. Bengzon, Jr., secretary; and Thomas R. Fitzpatrick, S.J., treasurer.

For school year 2006-2007, the ASF has provided ___ Ateneo students with the means to continue their education.

As the Ateneo Scholarship Foundation looks to the future, it hopes to fulfill more dreams in the form of scholarship grants. With its several fundraising campaigns lined up in 2008, the ASF will surely continue in its mission of reaching out to more students to share the gift of education, the Ateneo way.

Past Chairmen of the ASF:

1985 Felicito C. Payumo

1986-1988 Xavier P. Loinaz

1989-1990 Victor Y. Lim, Jr.

1991-1994 Ramon B. Cardenas

1995-1998 Alfredo C. Antonio

1999 Ramon B. Cardenas

2000-present Hector O. Tagaysay