For Greg and Pat Polansky, Carnegie Mellon University - and giving back - is a family affair.
Greg (S'74, TPR'76) and his two siblings hold seven CMU degrees among them. He began contributing soon after his graduation and has extended the tradition for more than three decades.
As a volunteer, he's been a trustee and member of the alumni association board. Most recently, he was president of the Andrew Carnegie Society, which recognizes donors who give at least $1,000 during CMU's fiscal year (July 1-June 30).
"I've gotten a lot out of my education and I wanted to give back. It just seemed natural to contribute financially to CMU," explained Greg, now a vice president at Dollar Bank.
After marrying Pat, Greg brought her into the CMU family.
"Greg's heart has always been with Carnegie Mellon," she noted. "And I've felt so much warmth and been so embraced by the entire community."
But Greg and Pat wanted to do more. When CMU's Board of Trustees challenged alumni to support students, they answered the call. They established an endowed scholarship through the Trustee Challenge matching gift program that will help attract top students. Their support also frees up university resources to fund other important areas, including breakthrough research from award-winning faculty.
"Neither of my parents had the opportunity to graduate from high school," said Greg, who named the scholarship for his mother and father. "They really supported our ability to pursue an education, so this was a way to honor them."
Added Pat, "The scholarship gives us an opportunity to meet the scholars every year, to get to know them and see where they're headed."
Said Greg, "CMU has been such an important part of our life that we felt it was the right time to step up to the challenge."