SAGE Scholars Educational Foundation Awards Patrick J. Eiding Scholarships to Over 100 Children of Philadelphia Federation of Teachers Members

By SAGE Scholars — June 26, 2023

Philadelphia, PA (June 26, 2023) - The SAGE Scholars Educational Foundation announces that over 100 students of members in the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers (PFT) have been recognized for their academic achievements and college aspirations through the Patrick J. Eiding Scholarships, totaling $18,000.

The scholarships were made available to teachers and members of the 13,000-person Federation who have seniors in high school or are currently enrolled in college.

“We designed the Patrick J. Eiding Scholarship to support the pursuit of higher education for the families of Philadelphia's dedicated educators,” said Dr. James Johnston, founder and president of SAGE Scholars.

The scholarship pays tribute to Patrick J. Eiding, a longstanding labor leader and unwavering advocate for public education. With over 20 years of service as president of the Philadelphia Council of AFL-CIO, Eiding continues to be actively involved in various civic and charitable organizations.

“He is a champion of labor rights and an ardent supporter of public education,” added Johnston. “We firmly believe that investing in the children of our city's devoted educators is one of the most impactful ways to ensure a brighter future for all students.”

Among the recipients of the scholarships is Alex Olson, who received the $5,000 Patrick J. Eiding Scholarship. Alex is the son of PFT member Heather Olson, a Kensington Creative and Performing Arts High School teacher. Alex graduated from Cheltenham High School and is currently pursuing his education at the Rochester Institute of Technology.

In addition to Alex, the following students received awards for Patrick J. Eiding Scholarships of $1,000:

Katelyn Tong, daughter of PFT members Jan and Kimberly Tong. Jan works at the School District of Philadelphia's Educational Office of 440, while Kimberly teaches at Overbrook Elementary. Katelyn is a Penn Wood High School graduate and currently studies at Widener University.

Jayhawk Reese-Julian, son of PFT member Jocelyn Reese, who teaches at Franklyn S. Edmonds Elementary School. Jayhawk graduated from Asheville High School and will pursue his studies at the Illinois Institute of Technology.

Jonah Badstubner, son of PFT member Christina Puntel, who teaches at WB Saul High School of Agricultural Science. Jonah is a George Washington Carver High School of Engineering and Science graduate. He currently attends La Salle University. In addition to the above, the SAGE Scholars Educational Foundation awarded $100 scholarships to support the academic pursuits of an additional one hundred students.

SAGE Scholars, headquartered in Philadelphia, is the nation's oldest and largest private college preparation and funding organization. With a mission to provide access to affordable college opportunities, SAGE Scholars brings together families, colleges and universities, and benefit providers to create college funding solutions. For more information, visit

Patrick Eiding inspiring the audience with his words of wisdom at the award ceremony’s outset.

Captured in the photo from left to right: Jerry Jordan, president of the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers; James Johnston, founder and president of SAGE Scholars; and Patrick Eiding, retired president of the Philadelphia Council AFL-CIO.

Jerry Jordan uplifting the scholarship winners and their families with his heartfelt encouragement.

Jerry Jordan and Patrick Eiding joined by Heather Olson, proud mother of Alex Olson, recipient of the $5,000 scholarship.

Jerry Jordan and Patrick Eiding standing alongside Katelyn Tong, winner of the $1,000 scholarship.

Jerry Jordan and Patrick Eiding accompanied by Jocelyn Reese and Jim Julien, proud parents of Jayhawk Reese-Julian, recipient of the $1,000 scholarship.

Jerry Jordan and Patrick Eiding pictured with Jonah Badstubner, a $1,000 scholarship recipient, and his mother Christina Puntel.

Jerry Jordan warmly shaking hands with Jan Tong, father of Katelyn Tong, as Patrick Eiding looks on with appreciation.