The path to college just got a little smoother for some Frankenmuth area students thanks to two hard-working Frankenmuth women and a man who loved and respected them both. Two new scholarships are now held by the Frankenmuth Community Foundation in honor of the late Ada B. Loesel and Alice B. Nowak; established by Alice’s husband (Ada’s son-in-law) Valerian Nowak.

After learning about the work of the Frankenmuth Community Foundation from others who had endowed funds for loved ones, Mr. Nowak worked with foundation Executive Director Stephen C. List to create the new scholarships. His goal is that the awards will help others in their quest for higher education - an endeavor he knows both his late wife and mother-in-law would strongly support.

Ada B. Loesel was a long-time resident of Frankenmuth who was widowed at a fairly young age, yet maintained her family farm and worked hard throughout her life. A simple woman who never lived extravagantly, she loved to be with family and play card games. She also worked for many years as a cook at Frankenmuth Schools.

“She was a wonderful cook and baker. She made amazing butterhorns! I was always happy to be her guinea pig when she would try out new recipes,”  Val Nowak offered with a twinkle in his eye.

Mrs. Loesel was strongly devoted to her Lutheran faith so the scholarship in her honor is specifically earmarked for a student who would like to pursue a career as a Lutheran pastor or teacher. Ada had three children, two sons and one daughter, Alice B. Nowak.

Alice worked at Carling Brewery beginning as a co-op during high school. Upon graduation (as salutatorian of her class), she was offered a full time position with the company and worked there full-time for 33 years until they closed their doors. She was a devoted employee of the company, working in several areas throughout her tenure. She had a superb sense of humor, something that came in handy when she was the target of practical jokes among the team at Carling.

Keeping busy was important to Alice so after a short break when the brewery closed, she went back to work, this time at the Bavarian Inn Motor Lodge from 1990 until 2005. When she wasn’t working, she was busy with her extensive garden, canning, camping, or fishing with Val. Christmas was Alice’s favorite holiday and she enjoyed creating special memories for her loved ones, making her death at Christmas time in 2008 all the more poignant.

The primary purpose of the Alice B. Nowak Scholarship Fund is to support a student interested in math and/or computer science fields.

Asked what Alice would think about this tribute, Val Nowak smiled broadly and said, “She would be very happy! Alice didn’t have a chance to go to college, but we were blessed. We made a good life and I know she would be pleased to know that in her honor, we are helping someone to build a good life for themselves.”

List added, “It was an honor to work with Mr. Nowak to begin these two new funds in honor of two women who were so important in his life. We look forward to sharing their story with generations of future Frankenmuth students to inspire them to work hard and give 100% to whatever they do, just as Ada and Alice did.”

Criteria for Selection:
The Alice B. Nowak Scholarship recipients will be selected on the basis of the following criteria:

  1. The applicant must be a member of the current graduating class of Frankenmuth High School.
  2. The scholarship applicant should be interested in pursuing a degree in Math and/or computer science for this one-time non-renewable scholarship.
  3. The applicant must be planning to attend a college or university full-time and prior to distribution of the scholarship funds must be accepted and enrolled.
  4. The applicant must demonstrate academic skills by having a grade point of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale while taking courses generally regarded as college preparatory.
  5. Selection shall also be based on financial need of the student for assistance with college costs.
  6. The scholarship will be awarded without regard to race, place of birth or personal handicap.
  7. Other criteria as recommended by the Donor.

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