Weiss Scholarship Honors Hard Work

Louie and Kathleen Weiss know all about hard work.

So in hopes of rewarding young people with similar work ethics, the Weisses this winter created a new Frankenmuth Community Foundation scholarship fund earmarked for those pursuing business or technology degrees – and who have strong experience in paid or volunteer work.

“It’s ingrained in us that work is primary in your life right after your religion. A strong work ethic is very important to us. That’s why we believe that a student who is work-oriented deserves some help,” said Louie, 87.

The first recipient of the Louie & Kathleen Weiss Scholarship Fund will be chosen this spring from among the students in the Frankenmuth High School Class of 2016.

The Weisses are lifelong Frankenmuth residents. Both grew up on dairy farms, attended St. Lorenz Lutheran School, Frankenmuth High School and graduated from Arthur Hill High School. Married since 1953, they have three grown daughters (Marcia Burk, Mary Weiss and Margie Bergman) and six grandchildren.

“The Foundation is very grateful to the Weisses for creating this scholarship fund and helping to educate future generations of young people in Frankenmuth,” said Stephen C. List, executive director.

The long and varied work life of Louie Weiss began as a young man. Taking his father’s recommendation, Louie earned a bachelor’s degree in business education and later a master’s in high school administration at Michigan State University.

After graduating in 1950, Louie got a job teaching in Haslett. But he was soon forced to quit after being drafted. Later discovering he was unable to serve because of back problems, the young man found himself without a job.

“I couldn’t go into the service and I sure didn’t want to stay home and milk cows,” he recalls.

When his uncle, Otto Trinklein, heard of his predicament, he hired Louie to work as a teller at Frankenmuth State Bank.

“I was only unemployed one day of my life,” he said.

After starting to date Kathy, Louie opted to return to teaching in Davison and, in 1956, started at Frankenmuth High School. In 1972, he was named assistant principal, but continued teaching as needed. He also worked as Co-Op Coordinator and Community Placement Director at the high school. He retired in 1991.

“But I’m still on the substitute teacher roster of the Frankenmuth schools and make it a point to teach at least one day every year. I believe that gives me the longest service of teaching in the school because I’ve taught at least one day every year for the past 66 years,” he said.

But that’s not all: Louie also helped at the bank on weekends and summers for 20 years.

After raising their daughters, Kathy later worked for 25 years at Bavarian Inn gift shops.

And in their “spare time,” the couple in 1985 opened their modest home as the Bavarian Town Bed and Breakfast and served more than 5,000 guests there over the next 30 years.

Along with volunteer work including the Lions Club and St. Lorenz Lutheran Church, the couple enjoys entertaining and playing bridge and pinochle.

The Weisses are grateful their hard work has allowed them to help others and to establish this new scholarship fund.

“So many scholarships are created after the people are deceased. So we’re glad we have the chance to see who benefits from it while we’re still alive and have most of our faculties,” Louie said

Criteria for Selection:
Louie and Kathleen Weiss Scholarship recipients will be selected on the basis of the following criteria:

  1. The applicant must either be a member of the current graduating class or a recent graduate of Frankenmuth High School.
  2. The applicant should be considering a field of study for a business degree or for a field of technical work as an applicant for this 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 average of 3.0 or higher during their high school years.
  5. Selection shall also be based on financial need of the student for assistance with college costs.
  6. The applicant must demonstrate service to his/her school, church or community through active participation.
  7. The scholarship will be awarded without regard to sex, race, religion, place of birth, or personal handicap.
  8. Other criteria as recommneded by the Donor.
  9. Selection committee decisions shall be final.


Making a positive impact in the Frankenmuth area!

Search This Site

We're Social