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Jul 13, 2024

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A History Making
Scholarship Duo:

BALTIMORE, MD — Everyone was in for a very pleasant surprise at the 2018 Polish Heritage Association of Maryland (PHAM) scholarship awards banquet here on May 20, 2018: For the first time in 43 years of awards a mother and daughter duo received simultaneous scholarships, resulting in one for the history books of the PHAM – and most probably a real familial rarity in any other scholarship program too.

PHOTO: Mother and Daughter Dual Awardees: Dominika Bondyra (left) is pictured with her mother, Malgorzata Romanowska Bondyra, after they both received 2018 scholarships from the Polish Heritage Association of Maryland – marking a historic first in the scholarship program that began in 1975.

Dominika Bondyra, 18, graduated from Perry Hall High School in 2017 She is presently a sophomore at University of Maryland Baltimore County and pursuing a BS degree in Computer Science. She loves photography, art, music and dance, and is an advanced flutist and a ballet dancer. Dominika is a member of Polish National Alliance (PNA) Lodge 238 and a Delegate to PNA Council 21.

Malgorzata “Gosia” Romanowska Bondyra, 43, graduated from Zespol Szkol Ekonomicznych High School in Torun, Poland. She also studied economics there at the Uniwersytet Mikolaja Kopernika, before she arrived here in 1995. Gosia has also studied Visual and Performing Arts – Violin Performance at the University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC) and is an accomplished violinist and vocalist.

She now returns to UMBC to pursue a BA degree in Management of Aging Services. Malgorzata is a member of Lodge 238 serving as its Financial Secretary. She is also the elected Council 21 Recording Secretary and Delegate. Gosia is Lodge 238’s insurance sales representative, also for the Council 21 lodges, and for all PNA councils and lodges in the State of Maryland.

The PHAM began its scholarship program in 1975 and to date has made grants now approaching $400,000 over the past 43 years. We know that the $1,500 grants awarded to each Malgorzata and Dominika will be put to very good academic use –  and we wish them both much success in their respective fields of studies.

Richard P. Poremski
Polish American Journal
Washington, DC Bureau
May 26, 2018