Pontiac Alumni Foundation: Scholarships presented to college students


 At the Pontiac Board of Education meeting on Monday, Aug. 1, the Pontiac Alumni Foundation (PAF) presented its annual scholarships to five graduating seniors.  The scholarships were awarded to the following students:

 —Amber Briggs received the John Thors Scholarship Award and the Strickland Family Scholarship Award.  Amber started at Michigan State University this past June.
— Aukury Cowart received the Omega PSI PHI Fraternity Scholarship Award.  Aukury will be attending Oakland University this fall.
— Salina Lo received the Al Dittrich Scholarship Award and will be attending the University of Michigan this fall.
—Tyra Jackson also received the Al Dittrich Scholarship Award and will be attending Western Michigan University in the fall.
— Tequila Scott received the Pontiac School District Trust Fund Scholarship Award and will be attending Eastern Michigan University in the fall.
“These students represent our hope for the future,” commented Retired Oakland County Circuit Court Judge Fred M. Mester who is the founder and president of the Pontiac Alumni Foundation.  Mester along with PAF’s Treasurer Steve Fladger presented the scholarships to the young scholars.  
“All applicants can feel justly proud of their hard work and achievements.  The Pontiac Alumni Foundation has had the honor of awarding over 150 scholarships in the organizations 15 years of existence,” said Mester.
 “This evening we must also comment on the dedicated work performed by our Scholarship committee Chairperson Hayes Jones and his committee members, the PAF’s Co-Executive Director Yvette Transou, Herman Proby, and Steve Fladger.  I want to also express my appreciation for the total support of this scholarship effort and all of our programs through our officers Ayanna Hatchett, vice president; Steve Fladger, Treasurer; and Mike Lavoie, secretary.  Over these years, former Olympian silver and gold medalist Hayes Jones, has been a good steward of our scholarship process.  Hayes has now moved to Atlanta, Georgia.  We shall miss his friendship and commitment to the youth of Pontiac,” Mester commented.  
“These scholarships are continuing the legacy of Service of the person for whom these scholarships are remembered.  We can not thank enough the families and organizations who have funded the scholarships in continuing the memory of their loved one in a most meaningful way.   We also want to express our appreciation to the Pontiac Board of Education for the confidence they have shown in our Foundation by supporting this Scholarship effort.  We congratulate Interim Superintendent, Jon Brown on his appointment.  He has been a friend of our Foundation since its founding.  We want to assure the board and the superintendent of our continuing commitment to working in partnership with them in pursuing our mission of a Certainty of Opportunity for all the children of Pontiac,” Mester added.
The Pontiac Alumni Foundation has four prongs to its mission to the children of Pontiac; Mentoring, Tutorial, Community Service, and Enrichment.  This fall the mentoring program will have the Birmingham YMCA as a partner in providing mentors for the students in Pontiac.
The Enrichment Program has included trips to the Detroit Institute of Arts, the Wright Museum, the Henry Ford Museum and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra among many other opportunities the friends of the Foundation have worked to help provide.  
On Wednesday, Aug. 24, the PAF will have its Second Annual Aviation Day at the Oakland International Airport in partnership with the Airport, Pentastar, Harrison Ford’s Young Eagles, and the Tuskegee Airmen.
During this summer in partnership with Ultimate Soccer and the Excell Program, the Foundation has provided two days of soccer a week for over 150 Pontiac children.
“To everyone who has supported our foundation and most particularly in helping us provide that certainty of opportunity for the children of Pontiac, we give our thanks,”  said Mester.
For additional information, contact Fred M. Mester at (248) 645-0800 or Steve Fladger at (248) 706-4842.