University’s Own Neil Horgan to be Appointed to Commission on Presidential Scholars


© Villanova University/Paul Crane

Neil Horgan, Villanova’s Vice President for Finance and Chief Financial Officer, is among a group of 21 individuals who will be appointed to the Commission on Presidential Scholars.

Sarah Wisniewski, Co-News Editor

In a press release on July 15, United States President Joe Biden announced his intent to appoint new members to the Commission on Presidential Scholars. Among the 21 candidates looking forward to filling these spots includes the University’s Vice President for Finance and Chief Financial Officer, Neil J. Horgan.

The U.S. Presidential Scholars Program was established in 1964 under the Executive Order of Lyndon B. Johnson. Up to 161 scholars are recognized each year, both from high schools and universities across the nation.

The commission for the scholars includes distinguished private citizens, each chosen by the President. Their duties not only include honoring the Presidential Scholars but also narrowing down potential candidates. Each year the commission sorts through nearly 650 semifinalist students to make the final review.

Commissioners represent a wide range of professional fields including education, medicine, law, social services, business and more.

“It is a great honor to be nominated to serve on the Commission on Presidential Scholars—to help identify and recognize our nation’s brightest young students,” Horgan said. “These are students who are not only academically gifted but committed to public service. They will be tomorrow’s leaders, both in their communities and in our country.”

Horgan has worked under his correct position at the University since 2015. Prior, Horgan worked as the Associate Vice President for Finance. Horgan originally was welcomed as the University’s Controller in 2000.

Horgan received his Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Georgetown University and went on to receive a Master of Taxation from Villanova University. Horgan also served on the Board of Directors of the Mercy Health System of Southeastern Pennsylvania.

The University has a strong commitment to the Presidential Scholars Program.

“Each Presidential Scholar is talented and unique, contributing to the University community both in and outside the classroom in diverse ways,” the University website states. “Some common characteristics of Presidential Scholars are a love of learning and a commitment to enhancing their local community as well as the broader civic community. The Presidential Scholars Program seeks to attract academic, culture, and civic leaders who are actively engaged in learning both through the classroom and in their extracurricular activities.”

Scholars often bring with them a natural desire to commit themselves to various academic and extracurricular activities, but the University does provide support and guidance for scholars to assist with achieving their goals and reaching their highest potential. All scholars are involved in cultural, intellectual, and service activities throughout the academic year.