YOUNGSTOWN –The Zoldan family of Youngstown, founders of Phantom Fireworks, is donating $1 million to Youngstown State University for student scholarships and to establish a new mentorship program.

The gift from Phantom Fireworks and the Zoldan Family is being made in honor of their parents, Sam and Sylvia Zoldan, and their uncle, Abe Yampolsky. 

The gift establishes the Zoldan-Yampolsky Family Executive Fellows Program in the YSU Williamson College of Business Administration’s Center for Non-Profit Leadership. YSU juniors chosen to participate will work with senior leadership on campus or at non-profit organizations to gain practical work experience. The goal is to increase capacity at local and regional non-profit organizations.

The Center for Nonprofit Leadership at YSU offers a certificate and minor designed to complement any major on campus and prepare students for future leadership roles serving the community.

The gift also increases the Sam and Sylvia Zoldan Memorial Scholarship endowment, established by the Zoldans in 2006. The renewable annual scholarship is for YSU business students who also take at least one class in Judaic and Holocaust Studies.

Phantom Fireworks traces its origins to the early 1970s and today is America’s number one consumer-based fireworks retailer. The company has retail stores and showrooms in 15 states and more than 1,500 seasonal tents and stands throughout the nation.

The gift is part of the YSU Foundation’s “We See Tomorrow” capital campaign. The $125 million fundraising effort is the largest in YSU’s history and has already exceeded $100 million.

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