Our Donors

Lawrence E. Pawl

Lawrence E. Pawl

Established by Dr. Lawrence E. Pawl in 2006, this scholarship honors his parents, Eugene and Lillian Pawl who did not graduate from college, but provided that their son had this opportunity.

This scholarship benefits Grand Valley State University nursing and pre-medical students who are the first in their families to attend college.

Dr. Pawl, a medical doctor specializing in oncology in Grand Rapids, Michigan, was the first in his immediate family to attain a degree in higher education. Lawrence graduated from Grand Valley in 1971 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology. Since his graduation from Grand Valley, Lawrence has served as a Grand Valley University Foundation trustee starting in 1981 and as an Alumni Association president in 1984-1985; in 1991 he received the Distinguished Alumnus award. His wife, Brenda, received both undergraduate (1995) and masters (2003) nursing degrees from Grand Valley.

LGBT Supporters

LGBT Supporters

This scholarship was created by members of the Grand Valley State University gay and lesbian staff and faculty and others who are supportive of lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender (“LGBT”) students. The purpose of this scholarship is to provide financial assistance for students studying at GVSU who demonstrate positive sensitivity to and involvement in LGBT issues, to promote visibility of LGBT life, and to foster service and activism in the larger community.

Linda '89 and Robert Rynbrandt

Linda '89 and Robert Rynbrandt

Linda ‘89 and Robert Rynbrandt established the Linda ’89 and Robert Rynbrandt Sociology Scholarship to support students studying sociology at Grand Valley State University (GVSU). In addition to earning her Bachelor of Science in Sociology at GVSU, Linda was a faculty member in the sociology department at GVSU for more than 15 years, where much of her academic career centered on women’s issues and social justice. Linda has served on the Michigan Sociological Association Executive Board where she held the position of vice-president in 2001 and 2002.

Lissa Roos Parker

Lissa Roos Parker

Lissa Roos Parker established the Dr. Andrew M.C. Brown Memorial English Scholarship to continue the memory of her longtime friend, Dr. Andrew Missak Cleverly Brown. Dr. Brown was a visiting lecturer in English literature from Cambridge University, England, during the 1970-71 academic year. He was sponsored at Grand Valley State College (GVSC) by the now -late Professor Robert L. Chamberlain from the Department of English. Dr. Brown passed away from cancer in January 2014 at the age of 63 after a distinguished career as an editor and publisher at Cambridge University Press.

Dr. Brown’s love of literature was nurtured at Magdalene College, Cambridge, in the late 1960s. After teaching in the United States, he returned to Magdalene College to finish his doctoral thesis on the novels of Edward Bulwer Lytton. At Cambridge University Press (CUP), Dr. Brown began as a junior editor in the humanities; became senior editor for literature in 1983, after establishing the company’s significant presence in American literary studies; then took on increasing managerial positions, culminating in his appointment as managing director of academic and professional publishing in 2002.During his CUP years, he produced an outstanding edition of George Eliot’s Romola for Oxford University Press. In addition to Dr. Brown’s devotion to English and American literary traditions, he also possessed an eclectic interest in world literature.

Lori Houghton-Rahrig and Kevin Rahrig

Lori Houghton-Rahrig and Kevin Rahrig

This scholarship was established in loving memory of Lori’s sister Teri Linn (Houghton) Marsh. Teri was a very active volunteer in her community and in her children’s schools. An ornamental horticulture/biology major, she always encouraged her children and others to continue their education. Her spirit of hard work, encouragement, and giving back to the community is her legacy and will continue through this scholarship.

Lynn "Chick" McNamara Blue '86

Lynn "Chick" McNamara Blue '86

The Blue Working Family Scholarship was established by Lynn “Chick” McNamara Blue ’86 out of gratitude for the education received at Grand Valley State University (GVSU) and to continue her legacy of leadership in helping students succeed. Chick Blue came to Grand Valley in 1968 as a clerk typist. Throughout her career at the University she held several positions, including director of records and registration, registrar, and vice provost and dean for academic services. In May 2015, she was named vice president for enrollment development, a newly created position focusing on retention and graduation.

Margaret "Peggy" Boyce

Margaret "Peggy" Boyce

Margaret “Peggy” Boyce, ’72, earned a Bachelor of Science in Art from Grand Valley. Peggy enrolled at Grand Valley while raising, with her husband Jim, eight children. She attended classes at the same time as her oldest three children were pursuing their own college studies, and she would like to encourage adult learners with her support. Ms. Boyce obtained a MA from WMU and taught Art at West Ottawa High School in Holland for 20 years, and also Art Education at Grand Valley.

Margaret Ward

Margaret Ward

Margaret Ward worked as a dedicated elementary public school teacher of music and art in Comstock Park, Michigan. As a student pursuing her college teaching degree, she worked hard to pay for her education. As an adult, Mrs. Ward established this scholarship to give support to aspiring art educators who now face similar financial challenges in pursuing their own degrees.

Maria Landon

Maria Landon

Established by Maria Landon out of gratitude for her years of teaching and to continue her legacy and passion for education.

Maria taught marketing courses for 27 years at Grand Valley State University (GVSU). While teaching four courses per semester, she managed to create excitement and interest in the course materials by using her high-level of energy, her broad experience, and her caring, understanding approach to students.

In 2012 she won the Pew Teaching Excellence Award at GVSU “Awesome,” “passionate,” and “best professor I ever had,” are a few examples of the descriptors students used to characterize Maria’s teacher. Colleagues and students agree that she manages to create very rigorous coursework while simultaneously engaging, entertaining, and creating lifelong relationships with students.

Maria is a strong advocate of marketing students being a part of GVSU’s American Marketing Association (AMA), an organization for which she was an advisor for seventeen years.

This scholarship will continue her commitment to students by assisting marketing students with financial need and encourage them to continue their professional development as a member of AMA of Grand Valley. The AMA of Grand Valley is an award-winning, student-run organization aimed at helping GVSU students network professionally with their peers, make lifetime connections, and learn to market themselves and their skills to potential employers.

Maribeth Wardrop

Maribeth Wardrop

This scholarship was created in honor of Maribeth Wardrop’s accomplishments as Vice President of University Development and Executive Director of the Grand Valley University Foundation, as well as her passion for philanthropy. During her 12-year tenure, Maribeth Wardrop led and completed 11 capital projects including the university’s first comprehensive campaign Shaping Our Future raising 96.3 million dollars. She also helped increase private scholarships which grew from 50 to 300 under her leadership. She was the first woman to serve as a vice president for Grand Valley State University.

The purpose of this scholarship was to honor Maribeth’s wishes to prepare and encourage aspiring fundraising professionals with a scholarship in lieu of a retirement celebration. This scholarship is the first named scholarship to support the Master of Philanthropy and Nonprofit Leadership Program that was established by the School of Public and Nonprofit Administration and the Johnson Center for Philanthropy. Students in this program will be exposed to national leaders across the nonprofit sector through this unique academic program that include rigorous academics, research , and workshops lead by esteemed leaders in the field.

Marilyn Sherwood

Marilyn Sherwood

The scholarship was initiated in 1993 by Seidman College of Business MBA alumna, Marilyn Sherwood. The scholarship provides financial aid to all non-traditional students who wish to pursue their MBA.

By the late 1970’s, Marilyn Sherwood had earned a bachelor’s degree, taught school, and with her husband Budge raised three children. As her children prepared for college, Marilyn decided that she, too, would continue her education and enroll in the M.B.A. program at Grand Valley’s Seidman College of Business. Marilyn earned her M.B.A. in 1983 and went on to a successful career in financial planning before retiring as first vice president from UBS, a wealth management company.

When Marilyn was in school, she promised herself that when she completed her degree she would start a scholarship, and to that end she did so in 1993 with the establishment of the Marilyn and B.P. Sherwood III Scholarship Fund. The Sherwoods are engaged civic leaders in the west Michigan community and loyal friends and ambassadors for Grand Valley State University.

Mark A. and Elizabeth C. Murray

Mark A. and Elizabeth C. Murray

This endowed fund, established by Mark A. Murray and Elizabeth C. Murray, supports Grand Valley State University students who wish to study outside of the United States and who could otherwise not afford to engage in study abroad. Mark Murray served the university as its president from 2001-2006.

Mark and Kris Kelley

Mark and Kris Kelley

Sanford “Mark” Kelley, a 1973 graduate of Grand Valley State University (GVSU), founded Parallax Technologies Corporation in 1986. Mark went on to a grow the company, headquartered in Grand Blanc, Michigan, until his retirement in 2005. After a successful 13-years career with Xerox Corporation, Kristine “Kris” Kelley joined Mark at Parallax for eight years before her retirement. Mark served in the US Army with the 101st Airborne Division in Vietnam as an infantryman. As a veteran with disabilities, Mark is committed to helping other veterans through volunteer service and financial support, particularly with the Folds of Honor Scholarship. He leads the Michigan Chapter of Folds of Honor and is a strong advocate for families of disabled and fallen veterans. Mark continues working in local and international community services as a member of Rotary International. Kris is an accomplished photographer, working in the field professionally and as a hobby. in 2016, Mark and Kris worked with the Grand Haven Area Community Foundation to establish the Mikel Allen Kelley Memorial Fund in honor of Mark’s brother. The fund ensures children and young adults with cognitive disabilities have access to activities in their community, where they feel welcomed and supported. The Mark ‘73 and Kris Kelly Therapeutic Recreation Scholarship continues the Kelleys’ legacy of helping others overcome barriers and engage in the life to the fullest.

Mark Redfield

Mark Redfield

This scholarship was established by Mark Redfield ’86, principal of Redfield Financial Group, and great friend and supporter of Grand Valley State University. Mark was a member of the Laker Baseball team and currently serves on the Seidman Alumni Board and Finance Advisory Board at Grand Valley.

Mary and Bill Seeger

Mary and Bill Seeger

The Mary A. and Wilhelm W. Seeger Global Programs Scholarship was established by Drs. Mary and Wilhelm (Bill) Seeger to enhance the learning experience of students striving to advance their foreign language skills through participation in short-term study abroad programs. Bill Seeger served 40 years, starting as an early member of the faculty and later serving as chair of the Modern Languages and Literature Department. Mary was also among the early faculty when she joined Grand Valley in 1965 as a professor of German. She retired as Dean of Advising Resources and Special Programs. As Dean, Mary continued teaching one course each semester until retirement, and launched the faculty and staff annual giving program where she continued to serve in a leadership role after retiring.

Marybeth Koeze

Marybeth Koeze

This scholarship, provided by Marybeth Koeze, honors the memory of her parents, Albert and Ella Koeze, who set an example by quietly helping young people while also rearing and educating their own five children.

Ella, with the support and encouragement of Albert, was able to pursue a distinguished career in politics and as a trustee of Grand Valley State University Board of Control serving for thirteen and a half years between 1967 and 1981. Her stewardship during the early years at Grand Vally was a source of great enjoyment to her and involved her at a time of life when most people are winding down. Her involvement with the challenges inherent in the position and the friendships she made, kept her an interesting and vital woman. This scholarship also follows Albert’s example by assisting young people in their pursuit of an education.

Marybeth Koeze, a gifted and practicing artist in herself, intends that this scholarship will not only assist students financially but also will encourage them in their study of Art which is so important in the definition of who we are as individuals and as a nation.

Matthew '03 and Kendra Gibson

Matthew '03 and Kendra Gibson

Matthew ‘03 and Kendra Gibson established the Matt and Kendra Gibson Accounting & Finance Scholarship to invest in the academic and professional life of a Grand Valley State University (GVSU) student with a declared major in Accounting or Finance. Matthew majored in Accounting/Finance at Seidman and thoroughly enjoyed his undergraduate experience. He believes that GVSU led him to a successful career and life achievements. As a family, the Gibson’s want to share their great experience at GVSU and give back to the next generation.

Matthew Hillman '05 and Dr. Krista Hillman '05

Matthew Hillman '05 and Dr. Krista Hillman '05

The Cultural Engagement Study Abroad Scholarship was established by Matthew Hillman ’05 and Dr. Krista Hillman ’05 out of gratitude and appreciation for the education they received from Grand Valley State University (GVSU) and the opportunities to study abroad. Both Matthew and Krista are loyal Lakers and members of the GVSU Alumni Association for over 10 years, which includes their service on the Alumni Board of Directors and the Young Alumni Council. Their gift will provide students with meaningful international experiences, which foster an appreciation and awareness of diverse cultures, people, and ideas.

McGuire and Aldrich Family in memory of Peggy Todd and Shirley Shippy

McGuire and Aldrich Family in memory of Peggy Todd and Shirley Shippy

As a family, the McGuire and Aldrich Family have established this scholarship in memory of two women, Peggy Todd and Shirley Shippy, grandmothers to Grand Valley State University graduates, Josh and Bridgette Aldrich and Todd McGuire.

Through Peggy’s strength and perseverance, she taught Bridgette Aldrich ‘13 and Todd McGuire ’16 to treat others with respect and to work hard to achieve their goals. Peggy’s generosity helped Bridgette and Todd with their college expenses. Likewise, Shirley was a model of love and compassion for all who knew her, including the 30 years’ worth of Special Education students that she worked alongside at East Elementary in Wyoming. Shirley’s generosity of spirit left a lasting influence on her family, including Josh Aldirch ’12, and her legacy continues to inspire today.

As a family, they have put this scholarship together to honor the memory of these women and to help a GVSU student achieve their goals. The gifts received from Peggy and Shirley will stay with them for a lifetime: their goal for this scholarship is to spread those gifts to Lakers for a lifetime.

Meijer Family

Meijer Family

Hendrik Meijer and his 14 year old son Frederik Meijer began what is now known as Meijer Inc. during the Great Depression as North Side Grocery in Greenville, Michigan. Hendrik’s bold move of opening his first store with $328.76 worth of groceries on credit paid off. A first-generation Dutch immigrant, Hendrik proved to be a savvy businessman, and his store doubled in size within three years.

By 1960, the company had over two dozen stores in West Michigan and in 1962 introduced consumers to one stop shopping with its “Thrifty Acres” stores. Prior to his father’s death in 1964, Fred had already taken over the responsibility of running the growing retailing operation. The stores became a tremendous success under the leadership of Fred Meijer, and are now led by his sons Hank and Doug. Meijer now has over 200 stores in Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky and Wisconsin.

A true renaissance man, Fred was a wildly successful entrepreneur, philanthropist, and patron of the arts. In 1995, he and his wife, Lena, were instrumental in creating the Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park, reflecting their respective passions. Fred’s longstanding support for learning at Grand Valley State University (GVSU) included gifts for the Frederik Meijer Honors College and the Fred Meijer Center for Writing and Michigan Authors in Allendale; the Meijer Public Broadcasting Center on the Pew Campus; and a land gift to build the Meijer campus in Holland.

To celebrate the family’s three generations of success, the Meijer family would like to help the next generation realize their dreams. The Meijer Foundation has established the Frederik Meijer Opportunity Endowed Scholarship to attract and assist students who will be the first in their family to pursue and receive a degree from a college or university.

Michael '06 and Janean '05, '08 Couch

Michael '06 and Janean '05, '08 Couch

The Michael ’06 and Janean ’05, ’08 Couch Black Excellence Scholarship was established in 2017 by Michael and Janean Couch out of gratitude for the education and experiences they received at Grand Valley State University (GVSU). As GVSU alums, Michael and Janean both understand the importance of higher education and the financial support and assistance that is required to persist to graduation. With this scholarship they hope to provide outstanding African American students with an opportunity to discover who they are and the excellence they have inside of them.

Michael and Susan Jandernoa

Michael and Susan Jandernoa

Michael and Susan have been friends of Grand Valley for almost 20 years and Michael continues to serve as a trustee of the Grand Valley University Foundation. Michael is a graduate of University of Michigan and worked as a Certified Public Accountant for BDO Seidman, and later served as a Director of Steelcase. In 1979 he joined Perrigo, an Allegan based pharmaceutical company, where he served almost 35 years in various capacities including CEO and Chairman of the Board. Susan Jandernoa taught elementary school for 30 years in East Grand Rapids and is passionate about early childhood development and the importance of proper nutrition and health care for young children.

Michael and Susan have established a scholarship to invest in future entrepreneurs involved in the Seidman College of Business Center for Entrepreneurship to create new opportunities that will be critical to future economic success in West Michigan. Their wish is to reward well-rounded students who have begun to build personal networks through involvement in athletics, extra-curricular activities and community service.

Michael F. Young '90, '94 Memorial Scholarship

Michael F. Young '90, '94 Memorial Scholarship

The Michael F. Young ’90, ’94 Memorial Scholarship was established in memory of Michael F. Young ’90, ’94 to continue his legacy of leadership in Rockford, MI. Michael earned both his bachelors and masters degrees in Public Administration, and was a member of the wrestling team at Grand Valley State University (GVSU). Michael was well known and respected for his work as the longtime City Manager of Rockford, where the thriving downtown reflects the efforts he led to improve the community over the past 20 years. Remembered as a passionate, dedicated, and respected city leader, Michael was a visionary who worked tirelessly to make Rockford a better place to live, work and play.

Michele and Richard Marquez

Michele and Richard Marquez

In honor of Mark A. Warren’s life and memory, Mark’s sister, Michele Marquez, established this scholarship to support future chemistry students who demonstrate academic excellence.

One week prior to Mark’s graduation in April of 2013, Mark lost his life to a silent but serious struggle with depression. Mark was known and admired as a smart, responsible, dedicated, and hardworking student and citizen. Mark is fondly remembered by family and friends for not only his curious and studious intellect but his witty and amusing sense of humor. He is also deeply respected for serving his country in the military, and he will be forever honored by those that knew and loved him as a thoughtful, dependable, and considerate individual with a selfless spirit.

Michigan Garden Clubs, Inc.

Michigan Garden Clubs, Inc.

Michigan Garden Clubs, Inc. (MGC) is a 501 © 3 non-profit organization. MGC is a member of National Garden Clubs, Inc. (NGC), and NGC – Central Region. The aim of MGC Scholarships is to serve, educate, stimulate, and prepare people in the wise use of our natural resources and the preservation of our natural beauty.

To accomplish this purpose, scholarships supports the education of deserving college and university students of Michigan in the fields of horticulture, floriculture, environmental studies, crop and soil sciences, landscape architecture, biology, botany and all related fields of study pertinent to the aims and goals of MGC.

Michigan Lodging and Tourism Association (MLTA) in honor of Richard A. "Rick" Winn

Michigan Lodging and Tourism Association (MLTA) in honor of Richard A. "Rick" Winn

Established in 2016 by the Michigan Lodging and Tourism Association (MLTA) in honor of Richard A. “Rick” Winn. Rick, president of Amway Hotel Corporation (AHC), is a driving force behind its trio of Grand Rapids hotels. In his current role, Winn oversees the operations for the Amway Grand Plaza, JW Marriott Grand Rapids, and Downtown Courtyard by Marriott Grand Rapids. He serves as the point-of-contact for his fellow general managers at AHC.

AHC generates the majority of tourism to downtown Grand Rapids, and employs more than 1,000 associates. The portfolio of hotels encompasses 1,200-plus guestrooms, 13 restaurants, and over 240,000 square feet of meeting space, featuring the connected DeVos Place convention center.

A 30-year hotel industry veteran, Winn began his 18-year tenure with AHC as general manager of Amway Grand Plaza, has been the collection’s vice president and managing director, and was appointed as president in January 2013. During his tenure at AHC, he was named Michigan’s General Manager of the year by the Michigan Lodging & Tourism Association (MLTA) in 2001. Under Winn’s guidance, the hotel company established the first and only five-diamond restaurant in the state of Michigan for ten consecutive years, The 1913 Room, which was recently transformed into Ruth’s Chris Steak House, noted as one ofNorth America’s most successful franchises.

A Michigan native, Winn remains an active member of the community. He currently serves on the executive boards of the Grand Rapids Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Michigan Lodging and Tourism Association, Grand Rapids-Kent County Convention/Arena Authority, and the Downtown Development Authority.

He began his career in 1980 with Premier Hospitality Management, Inc. After two short years as assistant controller and controller of one of its properties, the Kalamazoo Hilton, Winn became the vice president and controller for the corporation. Before joining AHC, he spent 12 years with Adam’s Mark Hotels where he began as the controller at the St. Louis hotel and ended as the corporation’s chief financial officer.

Winn earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in math from Western Michigan University, with a dual minor in business and German. This scholarship continues MLTA’s community investments by assisting students with the costs of their education with a goal to increase awareness of careers in hospitality and tourism management and promote diversity in the field.

Mike and Debra Pfennig

Mike and Debra Pfennig

This scholarship is given annually to a deserving Grand Valley State University Baseball Team Member who continually exhibits a commitment to success in the classroom and on the field of play. The recipient will be recognized for contribution beyond statistics on the field, including commitment to practice, leadership, and team unity. The recipient will be further recognized for his commitment in his chosen field of study.

Mike and Pat Urbanawiz, family, friends and classmates in memory of Stephanie Urbanawiz

Mike and Pat Urbanawiz, family, friends and classmates in memory of Stephanie Urbanawiz

Helping others is what Stephanie Urbanawiz was all about and Mike and Pat Urbanawiz, family, friends and classmates hope to continue her passion by establishing the Stephanie Urbanawiz Physician Assistant Scholarship in memory of Stephanie Urbanawiz. Stephanie was in the final phase of the Physician Assistant Studies program at Grand Valley State University at the time of her passing. She volunteered at Mercy Health where she later worked as a radiology technician and phlebotomist. As a member of the Physician Assistant Studies Class of 2015, Stephanie will be remembered not only for always giving of her time, talent, and faith but also for her strength and courage as she battled her cancer. All will remember Stephanie for her kindness, care , and love for the health care profession.

Mi-Light Photonics

Mi-Light Photonics

Mi-Light is a membership organization that serves as the focal point for the photonics industry in Michigan. They bring together professionals from corporations, manufacturing, academia and government dedicated to promoting and growing Michigan’s photonics industry. Grand Valley State University (GVSU) is currently a member of Mi-Light and joined to assist in their mission of stimulating innovation in photonics in Michigan.

Moriah Muscaro

Moriah Muscaro

Moriah Muscaro was the Grand Valley State University (GVSU) Feature Twirler from 2011-2014. During her time at GVSU, she competed on the state, national, and international level, bringing home 18 national championships for the Lakers. Throughout her 17-year-long career, she netted 35 national championships, and countless regional and state championships. She is the 2014 Grand National Collegiate Twirling Champion and qualified to represent the United States of America in Women’s 1-Baton Solo at the World Baton Twirling Championships in Italy in April of 2015. There she was named fourth in the world in the 1-baton event.

She is an 8-time Junior Olympic Baton Twirling Gold Medalist, an 8-time Miss Majorette of Michigan, and a 3-time Miss Majorette of the Great Lakes Champion. Moriah initiated a fundraiser for the Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital by running an annual “Twirler for a Day” clinic, allowing local area girls to experience a Laker game day, which netted nearly $1,200 for the hospital. In addition to twirling endeavors, Moriah was a part of the Cook Leadership Academy, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Student Advisory Committee, Campus Crusade for Christ (CRU), and volunteered at local nursing homes and the Oasis of Hope Center. Moriah was the Outstanding Student in Chemistry for 2011-2012, named Biomedical Sciences Graduate of Distinction for 2014-2015, and was the recipient of the Excellence-in-a-Discipline in Biomedical Sciences Award for 2014-2015. Moriah graduated Suma Cum Laude (4.0) with her Bachelors in Biomedical Sciences in April of 2015 and began her journey though medical school to become a physician.