Tribune Print Share Text

Making it easier to follow a dream

Endowment to provide scholarships for TV interns

Created date

April 23rd, 2013
You have not lived today until you have done something for someone who can never repay you. If these words, written by 17th century English writer and preacher John Bunyan, are correct, then Steve Guback lives life to its fullest. Steve, who lives atGreenspring, an Erickson Living community in Springfield, Va., recently gifted a $100,000 endowment, The Steve and Renie Guback Scholarship, to interns at the community s on-site TV studio. The endowment will be awarded in yearly $5,000 scholarships. Named for Steve and his late wife Renie, the award will be given to students volunteering 150 hours a year at Greenspring s in-house Channel 6 who are planning on a career in media or communications. I joined the Navy right before [World War II] ended, says Steve. I was not eligible for a full GI scholarship but was fortunate to receive the Ernie Pile scholarship for journalism studies. That gift helped fund my education at Indiana University. I am so grateful for that gift. It made a tremendous difference in my life. I am hoping to pay back that debt in this way.

History of helpfulness

The Steve and Renie Guback Scholarship is the fourth scholarship Steve has generously donated to students. The other three scholarships are awarded, in his honor, annually at his alma mater. The first is given to a high school student from his hometown of Norwalk, Conn., who plans to attend Indiana University (IU). The second is given to an IU student in the School of Journalism who, following in Steve s footsteps, plans on a career in sports print journalism. And the third is given to an incoming IU freshman who plans to major in journalism. I am happy to help these students start their careers in journalism, he says. The old saying, If you love what you re doing you ll never work a day in your life, is so true. I m a testament to that. I m lucky in that I ve been able to meet many of the students who have received the scholarships, Steve adds. It gives me satisfaction to hear about what they are doing in their careers.

Reaching out again

The decision to offer a fourth award to a Greenspring intern working on a media or communications degree was an easy one for Steve. He spends time almost daily at the TV studio, appearing in two popular campus programs,Talking Sportsand theArmchair Traveler. I enjoy the work I do at the station, says Steve. When speaking with producer Diane Havinga about interns, I thought it would be nice to help a student who worked there. The experience will, no doubt, help them in their careers. The best way to learn is by doing. Steve envisions the award recipients spending their time learning how to operate the cameras, ask intelligent interview questions, edit film, and appear in front of the camera. I think it would be great if they could put together a television show, he says. There are always so many activities going on around campus. The student could film an event, create a storyboard, and put together a program. I think that would be great experience. To get a job nowadays you need to be versatile, ask good questions, and work well with people. All of that will come into play at Channel 6.

Distinguished career

Steve s support of journalistic endeavors comes from a distinguished career as an award-winning sports writer withThe Washington Evening Star. He covered a wide variety of sporting activities, including NCAA basketball championships, more than a dozen Super Bowls, heavyweight championship fights, collegiate football games, tennis, baseball, and track. He has also covered the Washington Redskins since 1959 and continues to do so to this day. I was an eager beaver who liked to work hard, says Steve. I ve been writing for the newspaper since I was in high school. I am lucky. I was able to make a career out of what I love. It s my hope that these scholarships will help others do the same. Steve also served as director of information for the President s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports for eight years until his retirement in 1993. He was inducted into the United States Basketball Writers Hall of Fame in 1989 and the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame in 2005. Many of the recipients of The Steve and Renie Guback Scholarship will hope to follow in Steve s big footsteps, and he s ready to offer any help he can along the way. The scholarship s first winner will be announced at Greenspring later this month. I look forward to meeting the winner and working with them at the studio, says Steve. My advice to anyone looking to start a career in journalism is simple: you must work hard. It is a 24-hour-a-day job. You need to be enthusiastic, truthful, and accurate. And most importantly, you must enjoy what you do!