The David K. Sengstack Foundation, based in Princeton, has donated $750,000 for a graduate fellowship at Rutgers–Camden, university officials announced this week.

The fellowship will seek to attract and support "the best and brightest graduate students" from across the nation to study childhood while pursuing their doctoral degrees at Rutgers–Camden, according to a news release.

Alice Sengstack, David's widow, said the Sengstack Foundation seeks to support and nurture issues related to children. When she sought to honor the memory of her husband, a 1944 graduate of Rutgers College, the innovative PhD program in childhood studies at Rutgers–Camden seemed to be a natural fit.

"The Sengstack family has a generational commitment to advancing children, through such initiatives as Music Together and the Sengstack Foundation for Early Childhood," says Sengstack. "It is our sincere desire to encourage and support the study of childhood at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey."

The first Sengstack fellowships are expected to be awarded to PhD students for the fall 2009 semester.

In 1989, The Sengstack Group, Ltd., was sold to a Time-Warner subsidiary; the copyrights to more than 50,000 songs were included in that transaction. After the sale, the David K. Sengstack Foundation was established to promote positive, nurturing experiences for children during the first three years of their lives.