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Retired Professor, Alumna Establish Two Scholarships Focused on Community Service

Posted: May 25, 2016

When he was teaching at Buffalo State, Frederick Howe, professor emeritus of educational foundations, was committed to connecting with the community in meaningful and lasting ways. He created the college’s Community Service Day, which the Volunteer and Service-Learning Center (VSLC) took over when he retired in 2007.

Now he and his wife, Marilyn Howe,’77, a retired educator, have established two four-year scholarships for full-time incoming first-year students beginning this fall. The scholarships are designed for Western New York students who participated in community-service projects in high school and who are committed to continuing community service work as college students.

“We are very excited about scholarship opportunities for students who have already demonstrated an interest in community service,” said Laura Hill Rao, VSLC coordinator. “Because of the Howes’ gift, students can pursue community projects that will make a lasting impact on issues they care about.”

The first Frederick and Marilyn Howe Community Service Scholarship requires Buffalo residence and qualification as a “Say Yes” student from a Buffalo high school. The second Howe scholarship is designated for graduates of high schools outside of the city of Buffalo in Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Niagara, Orleans and Wyoming counties.

Both scholarships require that students be enrolled as a full-time (at least 12 credit hours each semester) incoming first-year student at Buffalo State; have a high school grade point average of 85 or higher; have demonstrated at least 80 hours of community service throughout high school; and have completed the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

The first scholarship amount will be whatever is required to cover the remaining balance of mandatory costs to attend Buffalo State other than tuition, up to $2,000. The second scholarship will be the amount needed to cover the remaining balance of the cost of attendance after state, federal, and institutional aid are subtracted, up to $8,000.

“We are thrilled to have scholarships made possible by a faculty member who has such a heart for community service and an alumna who understands Buffalo State’s mission of service first-hand,” said Susanne Bair, vice president for institutional advancement. “The Howes’ commitment and passion should serve as an inspiration to our students.”

Contingent on the donors’ funding, each scholarship is renewable for up to three additional years provided the recipient:

  • Be enrolled as a full-time student (at least 12 credit hours) each semester
  • Maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher each semester
  • Complete 200 hours of community service annually (six- to eight-hours per week)
  • Work to engage other students in community service in coordination with the VSLC


The deadline for scholarships applications for the 2016-2017 academic year is June 1.

To apply, complete the entire application packet including the scholarship application form, two completed recommendation forms (one from a supervisor of  volunteer work and one from a high school teacher), a personal statement or other communication addressing the questions outlined on the scholarship application from.

Incomplete applications will not be reviewed by the selection committee. Finalists for each scholarship will be interviewed by the selection committee. Submit applications to the Buffalo State Financial Aid Office, Moot Hall 230, 1300 Elmwood Avenue, Buffalo, New York, 14222.

For questions contact Laura Hill Rao at (716) 878-5811 or

About the Howes
Frederick Howe joined Buffalo State as a faculty member in the Educational Foundations Department in 1973, a year after completing his Ph.D. at Michigan State University. In addition to his faculty responsibilities, Howe coordinated Buffalo State’s participation in the Great American Clean-Up and spearheaded other volunteer and community outreach activities, including Community Service Day. He received the Chancellors Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2001.

Marilyn O’Hara Howe graduated from Buffalo State in 1977 with a master of science in elementary education and spent her professional career as a teacher with the Buffalo Public Schools.


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