A Lasting Friendship Creates $1 Million Endowment Fund for Friends Select

In the spring of 2018, Herb Siegel ’46 honored his friend and classmate Andy Lucine ’46 with a generous challenge to the Friends Select School community: Herb would match, dollar-for-dollar, $500,000 in donations to support need-based scholarships for Friends Select students. By the end of the calendar year, the community delivered: a total of $508,305 in gifts was raised by alumni/ae, parents, former faculty, and trustees to establish The Andy Lucine ’46 Scholarship Fund, a $1 million endowed fund to support students.

Michael Gary, Head of School, shares, “This challenge match reminded people of the important role Friends Select plays in educating Philadelphia’s children, particularly those whose families need financial support to attend. I believe this gift will inspire others to be generous and support the school’s endowment to ensure that Friends Select’s tradition of educating our city’s students will continue for generations.”

The generosity of Herb and his wife Jeanne was inspired by Herb's lasting friendship with Andy. As many current students and decades of alumni/ae can relate, the bond between Herb and Andy was solidified by their shared Friends Select experience. The two met as classmates but their relationship blossomed as teammates on the baseball diamond, with Herb catching and Andy pitching. Though sometimes it was the other way around.

As middle school students, the pair shared press in an article published in an April 1940 issue of The Philadelphia Inquirer, highlighting Friends Select’s unfortunate season opener loss to Germantown Friends at Belmont Plateau. The article stated, “In the game Pitcher Lucine simply couldn’t find the plate, and he willingly changed places with catcher Siegel on the mound. But Siegel’s arm refused to do his bidding and Germantown Friends youngsters shrewdly advised their batters to just stand there and ‘not swing.’” The story’s comedic spin may have overshadowed Friends Select’s loss, however; as the two teams faced-off, Friends Central’s team was waiting on a Main Line baseball field for what they thought was their game with Friends Select, due to a scheduling mishap.

Herb’s classmates shared his admiration for Andy. As a student, Andy was at the top of his class and was the recipient of the J. Henry Bartlett Honor Scholarship, an award given to a junior student each year. And, though grades weren’t ranked then in the same way they are currently, Andy’s report marks would be recognized at the honors level by today’s Friends Select standards. His performances as a student-athlete on the basketball, baseball, and soccer teams were remarkable, and he was inducted into the Friends Select School Athletic Hall of Fame in 1998.

Andy was also president of his senior class and a member of The Cauldron literary and arts journal. He served on the dance committee, and participated in drama and operetta. In his yearbook from his graduating year, his classmates noted his “ultraviolet ray personality” and predicted he would be a successful physician in the future. After graduating from Friends Select, Andy attended Haverford College, where he continued his storied soccer career, and—as his classmates predicted—he went on to a successful career in medicine, as a general surgeon in California. All the while, Andy remained loyal to Friends Select, attending regional reunions in San Francisco in addition to supporting the school.

“I am happy to be able to honor fellow classmate Andy Lucine and give future students the opportunity for a great education,” says classmate Aerhnout “Doc” Viele ’46. “Friends Select School was an important part of our lives and gave us a good foundation for our careers.”

Andy was well-rounded, ambitious, respected by both teachers and peers, a true leader, intelligent, and talented. And if you walked through the halls of Friends Select today, you would find that students still embody these qualities. Many of these students—more than 30% of the total student body—rely on Friends Select’s long-standing mission to provide financial aid assistance to students and families in need. For the 2018-19 academic year, Friends Select awarded more than $3.7 million in need-based scholarships. The financial aid program is also supported by income generated from the school’s endowment—an investment fund of contributions that grow on an annual basis.

The inspiring challenge match grant established by Herb in memory of Andy, who passed away in 2015, not only honors their friendship but also helps sustain Friends Select’s financial aid program and provides lasting security for the future as part of the school’s endowment fund. The completed challenge match grant to support The Andy Lucine ’46 Scholarship Fund totals more than $1 million.