Gift to help fund IDEA Hub initiatives at Penn State Wilkes-Barre

Headshots of Robert Tambur and Robert Tamburro

Father and son Robert Tambur, left, and Robert Tamburro, right, created the Tambur Family Foundation Economic Development Fund with a gift to Penn State Wilkes-Barre.

Credit: TFP Limited

A gift from father and son Robert Tambur and Robert Tamburro will create the first program endowment to help fund Penn State Wilkes-Barre’s IDEA Hub, which supports innovation and entrepreneurship in northeastern Pennsylvania.

The pair created the Tambur Family Foundation Economic Development Fund with a $25,000 gift, which was matched 1:1 through the University’s Economic Development Incentive Matching Program to create a $50,000 endowment fund. The gift will help fund IDEA Hub initiatives such as the Keystone Coding and Careers program, which aims to engage high school students through innovative STEAM programming.

“We appreciate the support from the Tambur family that will benefit learners at our campus and, in turn, our region’s economy,” said Cara Green, director of development at Penn State Wilkes-Barre. “The IDEA Hub prioritizes innovation and analytics skills courses for area industry leaders and employees, high school students and entrepreneurs. Gifts such as this one will help us build and deliver a successful entrepreneurship program that directly impacts northeastern Pennsylvania economic development.”

Robert Tambur is a former campus advisory board member, and his son, Robert Tamburro, is a current member of the advisory board. Tambur is the founder and Tamburro is trustee and general partner of TFP Limited, a real estate development and management firm in Greater Wilkes-Barre.

“It is important to our family to give back to the community where we can. We like to see the area continue to move forward economically and thought this was a valuable initiative,” said Robert Tamburro. “Improving educational opportunities for local residents enhances the quality of life in our region. It is beneficial to our local economy to have a university of Penn State’s caliber represented in our market.”

Keystone Coding and Careers was developed in partnership with Junior Achievement of Northeastern Pennsylvania and the Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber of Commerce with a focus on entrepreneurship, job creation and economic development in northeastern Pennsylvania. The program provides the opportunity for local high school students to learn science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills while exploring careers with an entrepreneurial spirit.

Penn State Wilkes-Barre’s IDEA Hub is part of the Invent Penn State initiative, which focuses on job creation and economic development across the commonwealth.

The Tambur Family Foundation Economic Development Fund continues the family’s legacy of generosity to Penn State Wilkes-Barre. In 2016, they established the Tambur Family Foundation Open Doors Scholarship at Penn State Wilkes-Barre. They have also provided philanthropic support for other campus initiatives, including the Struthers Family Career Center and the Nesbitt Academic Commons.

Gifts from the Tambur family and others will advance "A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence," a focused campaign that seeks to elevate Penn State’s position as a leading public university in a world defined by rapid change and global connections. With the support of alumni and friends, “A Greater Penn State” seeks to fulfill the three key imperatives of a 21st-century public university: keeping the doors to higher education open to hardworking students regardless of financial well-being; creating transformative experiences that go beyond the classroom; and impacting the world by fueling discovery, innovation and entrepreneurship. To learn more about “A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence,” visit

Gifts to support select economic development initiatives across the commonwealth are a priority of the campaign, and two opportunities to leverage University funds – the LaunchBox Matching Program and the Economic Development Incentive Matching Program – are available through the end of “A Greater Penn State” on June 30, 2022, or until the pool of support is exhausted. To learn more about how to make a gift and secure a match, contact Heather Winfield at [email protected]. Information about the campaign is available at