When Jacques Duverna Pierre-Louis moved from Haiti to the USA as a young man with his wife and daughter, he didn’t know much about what his new life would look like. He did know one thing for sure – he wanted his children to receive a rich, well-rounded education. 

As Jacques and his wife adjusted to life in their new country, they chose Catholic schools to educate their children, Chantale and Leslie. He instilled the love of learning in his children and ensured that they were provided with a solid education to better their lives and to be contributors to the betterment of society overall.

Jacques’ passion for education and his dedication to his work led him to develop, design, and invent several cutting-edge engineering systems which were groundbreaking in promoting efficiency in performance in the automotive and defense industries. As a research and Development Engineer for TACOM, Jacques received numerous accolades for his designs of several armored fighting vehicles used for front-line combat and which enabled troops to remain safe while conducting operations.

Inspired by the life of her father, Chantale Stevenson reached out to the Catholic Foundation to establish the Jacques Pierre-Louis STEM Scholarship for Students of Color Endowment, to honor his memory and help inspire others.

“A Catholic education provided me with a love for the arts, science, and mathematics as well as instilling the desire to share and give back to others. Education is a gift that is everlasting,” shared Chantale. 

“The education that I received developed me to be a productive adult. My brother and I are products of a good education centered around the Catholic faith, that developed us emotionally, physically, spiritually, and socially.” When Chantale’s daughter was born, there was no question where she would receive her education – she was enrolled at a Catholic school in order to benefit from the same great education her grandfather had believed in.

Everyone who wants a Catholic education should be able to receive one, but students from low-income communities face unique challenges that often prevent them from benefitting from a Catholic education. The Jacques Pierre-Louis Fund seeks to provide support for students to receive the same rich foundation as their peers.

 “Education is the entire foundation upon which our communities are built and the foundation upon which our country produces those that will keep the economy prosperous,” says Chantale. “Everything we do – all of our potential success – is dependent upon the quality of the education a child receives.”

The Jacques Pierre-Louis fund will specifically support scholarships for students of color who show an interest in mathematics, science, and technology with a desire for service to others. When students are given the opportunity to receive high-quality education along with the strengthening of their faith, the church and community are both strengthened.

To work with the Catholic Foundation of Michigan in setting up a fund in honor of a loved one, click here to learn more or call Angela Moloney at (248) 204-0332, ext. 2.


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