Brookdale student Sameerah Wahab has been named one of the top 20 two-year college students in the nation as a member of the 2016 All-USA Community College Academic Team.
The annual honor recognizes students who display an outstanding combination of academic achievement and community service. Wahab, of Howell, will receive a $5,000 scholarship and was recognized with her fellow team members during the American Association of Community Colleges national convention in Chicago, IL on April 12. She was also one of a select group of students featured in a special All-USA team edition of USA Today.
“I am beyond humbled and amazed,” said Wahab. “Being named the top community college student in New Jersey was a surprise. To now be recognized as one of the 20 students in the nation in the All-USA competition is surreal. I could not be more grateful to my colleagues, faculty and family who have helped me get to this point.”
The competition, which included more than 1,900 nominees from more than 1,000 community colleges across the U.S., evaluated students on grades, leadership, activities and their contributions outside of the classroom.
Wahab, a biology major, was nominated for her work as an officer with the Brookdale chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa international honor society. She also serves as a peer mentor in the Brookdale Honors Program and a member of the college’s Students for Global Citizenship club.
Since enrolling at Brookdale, Wahab has supported a campaign to build a water well for a village in Rwanda and completed a community service project in support of Dottie’s House, a support center for domestic violence victims in Brick. She works as a certified nurse assistant at a pediatric care facility in Toms River and is pursuing a career in medicine.
“Attending Brookdale Community College has provided me with the foundational knowledge and opportunities to create lasting networks and skill sets, which have ultimately enhanced and changed my life for the better,” Wahab said. “Serving as a chapter officer for Phi Theta Kappa and as an executive board member for the Honors Association has provided me with exceptional opportunities for growth, both professionally and personally.
“Completing several service learning projects has also provided me the ability to apply the knowledge from the classroom and apply it for the betterment of the community. The Honors Program has changed my life; its rigorous research and course offerings have allowed me to begin working on a symposium project as well as be an inaugural member of the Honors Peer Mentoring Program. I owe my success to Brookdale, and cannot be more excited for the future.”
In March Wahab was recognized as New Jersey’s top achieving community college student in the All-USA competition, earning a $2,000 scholarship and being named a 2016 New Century Scholar.