This year’s scholarship program of the Polish & Slavic Federal Credit Union saw scholarships awarded to a record number of 512 young members of the Credit Union, with a total value of $550,000. In this edition of the PSFCU scholarship program, 324 high-school graduates and 188 college students were awarded. The winners received scholarships up to $5,000. In total, since the first edition of the program in 2001, our Credit Union has awarded scholarships to more than 6,000 students for a total of more than $7 million. Scholarship recipients received their awards at two ceremonies held on Saturday, June 3 in Chicago, IL and on Wednesday, June 7 in New York City.
“Today’s event is a prime example of the fact that our Credit Union is more than a bank,” PSFCU President/CEO Bogdan Chmielewski said at the scholarship ceremony in New York. “The scholarship program is what sets us apart from commercial banks and other financial institutions. You would be hard pressed to find another financial institution or credit union that allocates so much to support the younger generation.”
A ceremony to award scholarships to students from the Mid-West region was held in the exhibition hall of the Polish Museum in America. Ambassador of the Republic of Poland to the U.S. Marek Magierowski was a special guest at the ceremony. “I am very pleased that I was able to participate in this ceremony. This is a very commendable initiative of the Credit Union. I do hope this is a long-term project, because investing in our youth is the best investment we can make,” Ambassador Magierowski said commenting on the event. In his speech, he also reminded young people that, aside from successes, life also consists of failures and it is very important to be able to recover from such failures and to learn from them.
Ambassador Krzysztof Szczerski, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Poland to the United Nations, was the keynote speaker at the New York ceremony, which was held at The Bowery Ballroom. Ambassador Szczerski was very impressed by the achievements of PSFCU scholarship recipients. Addressing them directly he said: “Do more than you think you can achieve. It is always worthwhile to aim higher and achieve more than seems possible.”
During the ceremony, a special PSFCU Rising Star scholarship was also presented. This year’s recipient of this award was Caroline Baran of Algonquin, IL. The young artist, who performs under the artistic pseudonym Kaeyra, reached the Top 20 of this year’s edition of American Idol.
In addition, after a three-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, ten young PSFCU members participated in the Presidential Internship – a study tour of Poland organized in cooperation with the Chancellery of the President of the Republic of Poland Andrzej Duda. The internship is an integral part of the PSFCU Scholarship Program and this year was held for the fourth time.
The PSFCU Scholarship Program was established in 2001 and since then, including this year’s 23rd edition, more than 6,000 young people have received a PSFCU scholarship, with the total amount of scholarship funds reaching over $7 million.