In 2019, the Saccommano Higher Education Foundation celebrated its 27th anniversary in providing scholarships to students in Mesa County, CO and Carbon County, UT. Since its establishment, the Foundation has awarded scholarships totaling more than $16.5 million dollars.
These scholarships are awarded on the basis of financial need and are intended to assist students from low-income backgrounds in securing a college degree, vocational degree or other form of higher education.
The foundation has grown exponentially since it started, from awarding 19 scholarships in 1992 to awarding 229 scholarships, totaling $797,250 in 2019.
The Saccommanno Higher Education Foundation was created by Dr. Geno Saccomanno, a well known and respected physician and cancer researcher, who passed away in 1999 after dedicating years of his life to developing a pioneering technique to assist in the early detection of lung cancer. The charge of the foundation is, "to promote the educational pursuits of students in financial need, thus enabling them to improve their lives, the lives of their families and those of their community." Students must reside in either Mesa County, Colorado or Carbon County, Utah, the native home of Dr. Saccomanno. The Foundation also funds a summer research project for Colorado Mesa University students and an effort to catalog research on uranium miners.