2nd Quarter, 2006
Communications Scholarship Winner
“I chose Communications as my major because I felt it best utilized my assets. I enjoy Public Relations and Marketing and have done these things as a career for several years. I also chose Communications as a gateway to other possibilities in my career. I have given some serious thought to going for my Masters degree, something I would have never committed myself to previously.”
A Portion of Jennifer’s Winning Essay:
Being that I was a terrible student and have worked terribly hard to achieve my goal of honors student I have learned that it was a path I could not take alone. I have learned to ask for help along the way and have received it. This scholarship would be a tremendous relief to the rising costs of a higher education. I plan to attend Graduate school and will seek means to pay for that as well, but having a clear credit card and pre-registered classes would be of great help.
I chose to return to school for very specific reasons. I built an entire career in new technologies marketing and communications without a degree, but I felt I was always lacking in some way by not having that degree. My grandfather, a Hungarian immigrant, always said to me (which I will paraphrase): “They can take a lot of stuff away from you, but they can never take away your education.” The value of an education goes deeper then just the classes, learning to deal with the bureaucracy of an educational institution, professors, other students, or the actual assignments given in class.
An education is also a tool to help to define yourself, conquer your fears and ground yourself with knowledge that can never be taken away from you. I have always felt as though a piece of me was missing by not having earned my college degree. While it may have taken me a number of years, which will remain unmentioned, to return to school and achieve my degree this degree will complete me in some ways. I am proud of my accomplishments, my hard work and was honored to be asked to be a part of the Alpha Sigma Lambda Honor Society.
I have learned to take myself from a place of a struggling student barely able to graduate the demands of high school to now becoming a secure well rounded educated individual who is proud of her achievements and her dedication to herself, her profession and to her academic career. In my former educational experiences I would find frustration and pity would outweigh the possibilities of triumph and achievement. I have touched upon something in myself that strives for betterment both in myself and the people I touch. I particularly like speaking with young women who are considering going to college and telling them my story of returning to school.
I chose Communications as my major because I felt it best utilized my assets. I enjoy Public Relations and Marketing and have done these things as a career for several years. I also chose Communications as a gateway to other possibilities in my career. I have given some serious thought to going for my Masters degree, something I would have never committed myself to previously. Recently I have been made aware of a Master’s level program in conflict resolution, peace studies, international relations, and other related disciplines. With a degree in Communications I believe that this will be a natural transition into a program of that kind, and one I can learn a great deal from.
In both my positions with the State of New Jersey and my current position with Union County, I was able to learn a great deal about Government and the role it plays in our communities. My current position, as a Project Manager for the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders, has taught me a great deal about local government and getting involved with the municipalities. At the Board of Chosen Freeholders, I am able to interact with the various communities on a much more “hands-on” level. My participation in the communities has included such things as: Forestry projects and environmental projects, volunteerism, seniors, Women’s related issues, the arts and several capital improvement projects created within the County. My political activism includes National, State, County and Municipal level activities. I am a dedicated individual truly involved with the activities of her community.
Receiving this scholarship would mean a great deal to me. When I switched positions from the State to the County position I was told that there would be tuition reimbursement. Unfortunately I found out later that I would only be permitted to take Public Administration course work. Being that I am so close to the end of my Communications degree, of course I decided to pay for the courses myself. I don’t make a great deal of money working for the County and receiving this scholarship would not only be a way to relieve my own financial burden, but also a mark in my travels on this road of education. The scholarship would also let me know that I have achieved success in my field of study and as a student. I have used my entire student career to reevaluate my abilities and strengths and change the course of my weaknesses. This scholarship would mean more then just the credits it paid for and the education it allotted me; it would also mean that my grade point average was good enough to receive it and that would be an honor.
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