The 50 incoming Brookdale Community College students awarded $1,000 OceanFirst Foundation scholarships were recognized at a dinner reception July 17 at the Shadowbrook, Shrewsbury. Attending the event were many of the scholarship winners and their parents, along with officials from Brookdale and OceanFirst.
The scholarships were awarded through the Brookdale Community College Foundation, which received a $50,000 grant from OceanFirst for the purpose of helping Shore area high school graduates continue their education. To be eligible, applicants had to be a graduating senior within the OceanFirst market area, have a GPA of 3.0 or higher, and plan to attend Brookdale this fall. Scholarship winners may use the money for tuition, fees, or books.
Recipients included a future speech pathologist, architect, lawyer, environmental scientist, marine biologist, interior designer and language interpreter. The scholarship recipients expressed their gratitude upon being selected, many commenting that it will help them focus on their goals, rather than their tuition bills. Many said they are paying for college themselves and some pointed out they would not be able to attend college were it not for scholarship awards such as this.
Students received gift bags with Brookdale sweatshirts and flash drives. Hannah Sisti of Spring Lake won two drawings, one for a Staples gift basket and another for a $100 Staples gift card.
“I knew right from the start I wanted to go to Brookdale,” said Sisti, a graduate of Manasquan High School. Her brother is a 2010 Brookdale graduate who went on to earn a bachelor’s from Rutgers.
“It’s a really smart place to find yourself,” said Suzanne Richards of Howell, whose daughter, Jessica Druze, will be attending this fall. Richards, who also started her education by taking business classes here in the late ‘80s, says she still has her Brookdale ID.
Jessica, a Howell High School graduate who holds down two jobs, said she has been saving for college for years.
“I’m so proud of her,” her mother said.
Attending the event from Brookdale were Jack McEnery, Brookdale Community College Foundation trustee and board development chair; Bettina Munson, president of the Brookdale Community College Foundation; Diane McEnery ’93, who just ended her term on the college’s Alumni Association board of directors; Webster Trammel, vice president, development, governmental, and community relations; Timothy Zeiss, executive director, foundation and alumni affairs; and Karyn Arnold, associate director of financial aid.
Students receiving scholarships are as follows: Rachel Murray, Kujtesa Klobucista, John Napoli, Ashley Saccomanno, Ashley Girard, Gina Cartiglia, Jessica Druze, Danielle Malfara, Kristen Bertinelli, Nicole Benis, Aubrey Moschberger, Anthony Grieco, Michael Jackson, Regina Colonna, Blair Kim, Alyson Kuhles, Bryan Conte, Megan Mellock, Briana Young, Michael Roibal, Caitlin Grasso, Andrew VanWagoner, Justin Chenoweth, Lindsay Leyden, Crismery Guerra Breton, Victoria DeStefano, Stephanie Sabia, Chynna Santos, Brandon Vella, Alyssa Capurso, Daniel Bury, Sara Case, Guadalupe Montesinos, Julianna Robinson, Angela Blasco, Aime Serrano, Randy McHugh, Nicholas Caruso, Christopher Maddalena, Kiersten Reed, Katelin Hulse, Hannah Sisti, Sandibel Betancourt-Rojos, Jason Schissel, Raymond Peterson, Maya Barno, Skyelar McArtney, Carolyn Foligno, Tyler Verdoni, and Teressa Turner.
Featured Photo (above) from left to right: Jack McEnery, Brookdale Community College Foundation trustee and board development chair; Diane McEnery ’93; Timothy Zeiss, executive director, foundation and alumni affairs; and Bettina Munson, president of Brookdale Community College Foundation.