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Mirabella residents give back to ASU community through philanthropy

6 recipients awarded inaugural Mirabella ASU Scholarship for student employees

Xavier Magaña-DeVries and Martin Wojcik smile together for a photo.

Photo by Eban Straker-Meads/ASU Enterprise Partners

August 23, 2023

Since 2020, Mirabella at Arizona State University has welcomed lifelong learners to a unique retirement experience at the heart of downtown Tempe and the ASU Tempe campus.

This year, residents wanted to pool their charitable contributions to the ASU community by establishing the Mirabella ASU Scholarship Fund, supporting Mirabella employees who are students at ASU.

It's just one step in the residents’ efforts to enhance the Mirabella experience and community through charitable giving. Residents recently formed the Charitable Giving Committee in collaboration with the ASU Foundation, which raises private support on behalf of ASU.

Together, in its first year-end campaign, residents raised more than $15,000 to award to students for the 2023–24 school year. The inaugural group of six student recipients work in various areas at Mirabella, including health care, valet, dining services and marketing.

“Our student employees are committed workers and are often learning on the job,” said Martin Wojcik, a Mirabella resident and co-chair of the Charitable Giving Committee.

As lifelong learners, Mirabella residents have centered their lives on continuous education. They now want to support the education and success of the next generation of students.

“I would say we're all very proud” of the students, Wojcik said.

Scholarship recipient Josephine Schmitz, a fourth-year student at ASU studying psychology, has worked as a certified nursing assistant at Mirabella since her first year at ASU. After graduation, she hopes to go to physician assistant school and continue her career in health care.

“I love taking care of people, helping people,” Schmitz said.

Mirabella has been a great experience for learning and connection, Schmitz said. In addition to learning professional skills, she is able to spend time with the residents.

“You get close with them. They know about my life. They know about my family. I know about theirs,” Schmitz said. “I’ll remember them all forever.”

Schmitz, who pays for her own rent and tuition, said she is grateful for the assistance the Mirabella ASU Scholarship Fund provides.

Another recipient, fourth-year student Xavier Magaña-DeVries, works in food service and is studying aerospace engineering. After he graduates, he hopes to work in Arizona for a while and eventually go home to California.

But his longer-term goal is to one day get his PhD and become a professor to teach future generations about engineering.

Magaña-DeVries said he wasn’t sure he would get the scholarship, but he saw applying for it as an opportunity to have his own story heard by residents. When he received the scholarship, he was shocked, he said.

The scholarship will enable him to dedicate more time to his studies instead of working extra hours to pay for his education.

“The money I received from the scholarship means a lot,” Magaña-DeVries said.

Those interested in supporting the Mirabella ASU Scholarship Fund can visit the ASU Foundation site.

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