SEBEC — Last year, the first ever Whoopie Pie Sale in Celebration of Jimmy Mike’s Birthday was held and raised over $1,400 for the Sebec Reading Room and the Ecumenical Food Cupboard in Milo (now Dyer’s Hope House). Because this event was so well received, it continues in 2021 with the addition of an inside yard sale.

The whoopie pie sale and indoor yard sale will be held on Saturday, Sept. 25 at the Sebec Reading Room, 665 Sebec Village Road, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., or until the whoopies are sold out. The entire event is strictly by donation, the whoopie pies as well as the yard sale items, and 100 percent of the proceeds will be divided between the food cupboard and the Sebec Village Associates.

How much will you pay for a whoopie pie? Be generous as this is a fundraiser for two important organizations, but whoever donates the most money will receive a dozen whoopie pies in October, a dozen whoopie pies in November, and a dozen whoopie pies in December as a thank you. Share them, hoard them, enjoy them while doing good within your community.

Tax deductible donations can be made directly by mailing a check written to “SVA” to Joan Baird, 87 Sunset Drive, Sebec, ME 04481; checks written out to the SVA will be shared with the Ecumenical Food Cupboard in Milo.

Questions? Requests? Contact Barbara Mauzy at 207-564-3232.

Contributed photo
BIRTHDAY WHOOPIE PIES — The Whoopie Pie Sale in Celebration of Jimmy Mike’s Birthday will be from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sept. 25 at the Sebec Reading Room to benefit the Sebec Village Associates and the Milo food cupboard.

PORTLAND — Twenty-five students from across Maine have been welcomed to the University of Southern Maine this fall as they embark on a college journey that for many seemed out of reach. The new Promise Scholars cohort is USM’s largest to date and will benefit from a unique program designed to create a path forward for financially challenged students who are highly motivated to succeed. In addition to bridging each student’s financial gap, the USM Promise Program provides an array of enrichment opportunities and a network of support from peer and professional staff to help first-generation college students overcome common barriers and persist to graduation.

Among the 25 Promise Scholars is 2021 Penquis Valley High School graduate Salena Goodine.

Now in its fourth year, the program has provided a total of 83 scholarships to economically disadvantaged and first-generation college students referred from partner youth-serving organizations across the state of Maine. Over $235,000 in scholarship funds, including $90,000 in commitments for the incoming cohort, has been awarded to scholars for the 2021-22 academic year.

Allan Monga, a Deering High School graduate and newly awarded scholar, shared, “earning the Promise Scholarship is a win for me and my family, and it’s a generational win as my younger sisters will be encouraged by my success.” These personalized scholarships are multi-year, top-off awards that bridge the gap between a student’s individualized aid package and cost of full tuition and fees. “This scholarship will help me to move mountains,” Monga added.

Yet, challenges for students go beyond financial costs. “College is a brand-new experience for first-generation students and their families,” says Daniel Barton, the program’s coordinator. “Simply offering students a scholarship and a few words of encouragement is not enough. While affordability provides access, it must be coupled with an experience rich in community, the opportunity to engage, and strategic guidance navigating campus resources.”

Scholarship funding paired with extensive support offers the program’s diverse scholar group the opportunity to thrive at the university. Scholars transition to USM through a unique immersion week experience prior to other students arriving on campus centered on volunteerism, building community, and acclimating to campus through a series of engaging activities and workshops. Scholars are also matched with a peer mentor for the duration of their first year to help them navigate college life and foster a sense of belonging on campus.

The incoming cohort of 25 scholars represents a guided effort to offer scholarships to students from every corner of the state. Scholars hail from 18 different high schools and represent more than 10 youth-serving organizations, including the Boys and Girls Club of Southern Maine, Camp Susan Curtis, JMG, the Olympia Snowe Women’s Leadership Institute, The Telling Room, and TRIO Upward Bound.

“Expanding the program’s geographic diversity is important,” Barton said, “and our youth organization partners are essential in that effort.” Recipients of the Promise Scholarship have demonstrated academic excellence and a personal passion for giving back to their community.

To learn more about the Promise Scholarship Program at the University of Southern Maine and the scholars it serves please visit