Mester Family Endowment: Students awarded first scholarships


Central Michigan University recently awarded the first two student scholarships funded by the Honorable Fred M. and Lynne M. Mester Family Endowment. Social Work major Sarah Ann Coston of Mount Pleasant and Social Studies major Jacqueline Wing of Haslett were the two recipients.

The Mester Family Endowment Scholarship was established to recognize students who have demonstrated leadership roles in community service and a spirit of actively trying to better the world around them. The scholarship provides financial support to full-time undergraduate CMU students with a major or minor in English, Political Science or Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work.

According to Dean Pamela Gates of the College of Humanities and Social and Behavioral Sciences "both Sarah Ann Coston and Jacqueline Wing are outstanding students and active volunteers. We are proud to have them the first recipients of the Mester Family Endowment Scholarship".

Coston is a social work major who hopes to apply her skill by working with children who have experienced mental and/or physical traumas within abusive households. Throughout her young life, Coston has wanted to help people. Through the efforts of her grandmother, Sarah volunteered through her local Kiwanis Club at the Isabella Soup Kitchen. Every spring Coston has been a volunteer at the Michigan Special Olympics as well as assisting in their fund raising efforts. While at CMU she continues her volunteer efforts at the Special Olympics and the Isabella Community Soup Kitchen.

Coston is the first in her family to attend college. "I struggle financially every day, but I will not allow costs to stop me from achieving my dreams. The Mester Family Endowment Scholarship will help me to pursue my degree and live my dreams of helping others through my career" said Coston.

Wing, a Social Studies major, plans to teach history, economics and geography to middle school children. She has a passion for incorporating her volunteerism experiences in the classroom.

"Community service has been a part of my life since my freshman year of high school. Initially, I joined my local 4-H club for social reasons, but left gaining more knowledge and skills and the enthusiasm to seek other volunteer opportunities" said Wing.

Wing's community service efforts include working to clean up and beautify Riverside Park in Lansing, in addition to helping to design their original website. She became part of the mentoring program at her high school.

Wing said "the elementary children I mentored needed not only academic help, encouragement with their self esteem, but they also needed a friend. My interest was not to have the children see me one hour a week, but I encouraged them that I would be available 24/7."

The Honorable Fred M. and Lynne M. Mester Family Endowment Fund was created to recognize the two 1959 Central Michigan University graduates' legacy as respected friends, colleagues and mentors.

The University worked to recognize Judge Mester's distinguished judicial career spanning over twenty six years with the Oakland County Circuit Court; his service as a former prosecutor with the U.S. Attorney's office, as chief of the Civil Division of the United States Attorney's office, and as president of the Federal Bar Association, Eastern District of Michigan Chapter. Mester is also a veteran in the military rising to the rank of captain in the United States Army.

Lynne Mester, also a 1959 Central Michigan University graduate, holds a degree in Education with a major in Social Studies, minors in Biology and English. Mrs. Mester was the first woman to receive a degree from Central Michigan University as it evolved from Central Michigan College in 1959. She is recognized for her highly honored teaching career both in the United States and Germany.

Judge Mester said "We want to bring the story of these students to our fellow lawyers, colleagues and friends who have contributed to this Endowment. We want to say thank you and express our appreciation of the value they are giving back to our society through their kindness and generosity in the support of this endowment."

The College of Humanities and Social and Behavioral Sciences hosted a luncheon in October for Mester and his wife, Lynne to meet the scholarship recipients.

"When Dean Pamela Gates and the College Development Officer Lisa Smith offered to have us meet the two recipients for lunch, we could not have been more honored. Sarah and Jacqueline are two very bright students who are committed to improving our communities. We are just so honored by this opportunity." said Judge Mester.

For additional information about the Mester Family Scholarship, contact Lesa Smith, CHSBS director of Development at (989) 774-3341 or

Published: Mon, Nov 7, 2011


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