Mike Mazur had the joy of sharing his life with two wonderful women, and he’s celebrating them both by investing in this region’s young people.
Mike’s wife, Alice Mazur, spent more than 30 years as an elementary school teacher in Portage. She loved her job and her students.
Mike chuckles as he tells about one little trouble maker who liked to prank Alice during class: “He was always getting into trouble. One day he stuffed her boots with paper, so when she went to put them on at the end of the day, she couldn’t get her foot in. Alice came home and asked me what she should do about it – so I told her. The next day, when that boy went to put his boots on, they were filled with paper. When he figured it out, he just looked up at Alice and smiled.”
Mike created the Alice McGivney Mazur Memorial Scholarship fund to keep those memories alive. “She was a good wife and a good person. I wanted to do something to honor that.” Mike’s fund provides a scholarship every year to a college-bound Portage Area High School graduate pursuing elementary education.
Alice loved to play piano, and, along with Mike, travelled the world. With no children to carry on her legacy, Mike hopes this annual award will encourage other young people to follow in her footsteps. At $8,000 a year, it’s one of the region’s most generous scholarships.
Mike also honored his big sister, Ann, with the Ann Mazur Memorial Scholarship.
Ann overcame poverty and chronic illness during the Great Depression to work her way through secretary school as a teenager and into a successful career on Wall Street. She, too, loved to travel, and saw the world. Anne returned to Johnstown to care for her parents when rheumatic fever struck the area, and lived out the rest of her life in this region.
Ann counseled Mike on investing throughout his life, guiding him to financial security. He’s paying her kindness forward with an annual scholarship, which is for Penn Cambria High School graduates. Like Alice’s scholarship, this award is for someone pursuing studies in education.
This is the first year for both awards, creating legacies for women who felt strongly about education, and were committed to learning as long as they lived.
Portage and Penn Cambria students and alumni should contact their guidance counselors for scholarship details and applications.
If you’d like to set up your own scholarship fund, contact Katrina Perkosky: firstname.lastname@example.org.