MORRISTOWN – High school seniors from around Morris County, all of them children of area first responders or first responders themselves, received scholarships recently from the 200 Club of Morris County, an organization of concerned citizens who support police officers, firefighters and emergency medical services providers.
The $5,000 scholarships were won by 22 seniors who demonstrated extraordinary dedication to their studies. To be eligible, students must demonstrate excellence in academic performance, community service and extracurricular activities. Financial need also is taken into consideration. The 200 Club of Morris County increased the scholarship amount to $5,000 this year.
Winners are: Kyle Ailara, Sparta High School; Sara Anthony, Lenape Valley Regional High School; Gina Aragona, Morris Hills High School; Brian Carey, Boonton High School; Dena Castellani, Delaware Valley Regional High School; Dana Cavanaugh, Parsippany Hills High School; Brett Conrads, Newton High School; Ashley Craig, High Point Regional High School; Gabriel Haila, Morris Knolls High School; Kelsey Hardiman, Hackettstown High School; Ryan Houser, Morristown High School; Donald Irons, Hackettstown High School; Daniel Kats, Montville Township High School; Olivia Lofaro, Randolph High School;
Also, Elizabeth Nagidi, Morristown High School; Oscar Ponciano, Morristown High School; Paul Romeo, Montville Township High School; Alecsander Sudit, Parsippany Hills High School; Sarah Sullivan, Mount Olive High School; Colby Thomas, Parsippany Hills High School; Gabriella Viola, Hanover Park High School; and Kelly Whritenour, Boonton High School.
In addition, Dana Catherine Cavanaugh, Kelsey Hardiman, Daniel Kats, Elizabeth Nora Nagidi, and Oscar J. Ponciano were awarded $500 book grants from Glaxo Smith Kline, and Ashley Suzanne Craig was awarded the $1000 Eisenberg Service Award for exceptional community service.
“This is one of our truly pleasurable programs,” said Lou Nisivoccia, president of the 200 Club of Morris County. “The parents of these children put their lives on the line to protect us. These scholarships are a way to thank them and to assure that we’ll have well-educated, excellent leaders needed to assure a safe and secure society in the future.”
Winners received their awards May 19 at the Zeris Inn, Mountain Lakes.
The annual scholarship is open to children with a parent actively serving with or retired from a Morris County police department, fire department, ambulance squad, the New Jersey State Police or as a paramedic with a Morris County-based hospital. Students whose parents are actively serving with a federal or state law enforcement agency also are eligible, as are students who, themselves, volunteer as firefighters or EMTs.
Children may be planning to attend college or post-high school vocational school.
The 200 Club began sponsoring the scholarships in 1982. Since then, hundreds of students have received the awards.
Founded in 1971, the club has distributed more than $4 million in benefits to police officers, firefighters and emergency medical services workers and their families. Benefits take the form of survivor benefits to the families who have lost a spouse who was a first-responder and scholarships that have been awarded to children of emergency workers in Morris County. The organization also recognizes the valor of local heroes with an annual award program. Information about membership in the 200 Club and its programs is available by calling (732) 279-4258 or by clicking onhttp://200clubofmorriscounty.com.