|By Marketwired .||
|August 9, 2013 10:00 AM EDT||
NEWARK, NJ--(Marketwired - August 09, 2013) - On Saturday, August 3, 107 students in New Jersey SEEDS' Scholars and Young Scholars Programs completed their 14-month experiences with the organization and celebrated their graduations.
New Jersey SEEDS is an educational nonprofit that transforms the lives of motivated, high-achieving students from low-income families. The Scholars Program is a tuition-free academic program designed to prepare eighth-grade students in New Jersey for placement in academically rigorous selective schools with substantial financial aid packages. The Young Scholars Program works with children in fifth and sixth grades in Greater Newark. Students enrolled in the tuition-free program engage in academic classes before being placed in day or junior boarding schools with significant financial aid directly from the independent schools.
"We're incredibly proud of our Scholars and Young Scholars in the Class of 2013 for all they have accomplished during their time with us," says Ronni Denes, President of New Jersey SEEDS. "In each program, these wonderfully ambitious students spend approximately 400 hours with SEEDS in academic classes. That's in addition to the time they spend in school, in extracurricular activities and completing their SEEDS homework, which is substantial. These are exceptionally dedicated young people who recognize the opportunities that await them in the future if they continue to excel."
Nearly 600 family members and friends joined SEEDS graduates, staff, faculty and board members for the 2013 Scholars and Young Scholars Commencement Ceremony at Summit High School in Summit, New Jersey. Kenza Bouanane (Scholars '13, Brooks School '17) and Anika Buch (Young Scholars '13, Morristown-Beard '20) represented their fellow scholars as Commencement speakers.
In addition, the event's Commencement Address was given by SEEDS alumna Chisa Hutchinson. A member of the organization's first graduating class in 1994, Chisa was placed at Kent Place School by SEEDS. Having never seen a play until her time at Kent Place, Chisa went on to earn her B.A. in Dramatic Arts from Vassar College and an M.F.A. in Playwriting from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts. In her speech, Chisa encouraged the next generation of SEEDS scholars to "say yes to everything" when it comes to new experiences and ideas at their independent schools.
Congratulations to New Jersey SEEDS' graduates!
Young Scholars Class of 2013 ------------------------- John Barahona Jordi DeBarros Ruqaiyyah Lucas-Caldwell Maya Barnes Joss Eyondi Elizabeth Morel Rania Benatia Elijah Green Taniyyah Payne Lucas Bernui Jasmine Harris Emily Ramos Amarie Betancourt Julia Hatchard Bernardo Stival Anika Buch Meilan Holland
Scholars Class of 2013 ------------------------- Mariam Abdelhaq Alejandro Garcia Lauryn Onkendi Alexandrea Agyekum Willietta Gombeh Michael Osei Wajdi Ahemed Nicholas Gomez Makelsey Page Sabrina Alves Silvana Gomez Roshini Panicker Albana Baftiri Monica Hanna Satinder Parmar Ruby Bello Anna Hasson Riya Patel Aniyah Borges Mekhi Holley Cyan Perdue Kenza Bouanane De'Jah Jennings Leonardo Pereira Brandon Bustamante Destiny Johnson Ancelmo Polanco Charles Cadena Jereme Johnson Rafal Promowicz Carnela Cady Nirav Kinkhabwala Luan Quispe Noelia Calcano Silvestre Karandeep Komal Ashfaquar Rahman Kenan Can Roselyn Korngor Israel Ramirez Eldad Cano Malik Kosanovich Akshay Rana Richard Chen Enmanuel Lamadrid Jamir Reddick Gabriella Clarizio Amadi Lasenberry Zishan Sajid Shadimere Coles Lazarena Lazarova Victoria Seymour Melissa Cortes Kyairaa LeRose-Almeida Johanna Sosa Kaja Darien Grace Lopez Chantal Stephenson Shubha Debnath Nathali Madrid Jakub Sudol Ymer Dinoshi Ashley Maldonado Bianca Swidler Abraham Eafa Sabrina Marques Abdul-Nafea Syed Kyara Echeverry Kinaya McEady Viviana Torres Ransly Familia Kerry McGrath Giovanni Vargas, Jr. Christopher Figueroa MaSonia McPherson Ebonie Walker Matthew Figueroa Michelle Mendez-Castro Roanne Yehia Daphne Flores Nicole Mora Amera Youssef Mateo Flores Natalia Mora Stanley Zheng Armoni Foster Patrick Mosquera Nada Zohayr Margarita Fuentes Millenah Nascimento Alejandro Zuleta
At the ceremony, several students were honored for academic and leadership accomplishments:
- Jordi DeBarros was named the Edward and Barbara Becker Scholar for his outstanding academic achievement and exemplary work while in the Young Scholars Program.
- Emily Ramos was named the Cavalier Scholar. The Cavalier Scholarship helps to underwrite tuition at a private school for a deserving student. The scholarship is generously awarded by the F&P DeRosa Memorial Fund.
- Bianca Swidler was named the Blair MacInnes Scholar for her outstanding academic achievement and dedication to education while enrolled in the New Jersey SEEDS Scholars Program.
- Abdul-Nafea Syed was named the Dwight L. Wilson Scholar for his sense of personal ethics, honesty, integrity, love of education and willingness to work hard while enrolled in the New Jersey SEEDS Scholars Program.
- Amera Youssef was presented with the Dean's Award for her overall achievement, strong leadership, citizenship, exceptional academic qualities and great personality while enrolled in the Scholars Program.
- Nada Zohayr was named the Amy Ziebarth Scholar for her passion for social justice and strong commitment to SEEDS while enrolled in the Scholars Program.
New Jersey SEEDS would also like to thank the following partner schools for offering admission and substantial financial aid packages to SEEDS' scholars this year.
All Saints Episcopal Day School Morristown-Beard School Bergen County Academies Newark Academy Berkshire School Northfield Mount Hermon School Blair Academy Oratory Preparatory School Brooks School Passaic County Technical Institute Buxton School Peck School Cambridge School of Weston Peddie School Cate School Pennington School CFS, The School at Church Farm Perkiomen School Chatham Day School Phillips Academy Andover Choate Rosemary Hall Phillips Exeter Academy Concord Academy The Pingry School Dana Hall School Poly Prep Country Day School Deerfield Academy Pomfret School Delbarton School Princeton Day School Dublin School Putney School Dwight-Englewood School Saddle River Day School Episcopal High School Salem Academy Far Brook School Science Park High School Fessenden School Seton Hall Preparatory School Foxcroft School St. Andrew's School Friends Seminary St. George's School Fryeburg Academy St. Margaret's School George School St. Mark's School Gill St. Bernard's School St. Paul's School Governor's Academy St. Peter's Preparatory School Hackley School St. Timothy's School Health Sciences Technology High School Stoneleigh-Burnham School The Hill School Stony Brook School Hudson School Storm King School Kent Place School Tabor Academy Kiski School Taft School Lawrenceville School Union City High School - Academy for Enrichment and Advancement Masters School Union County Vocational - Technical Schools Mercersburg Academy Wardlaw-Hartridge School Middlesex County Academy for Sciences West Nottingham Academy Miss Porter's School Western Reserve Academy Montclair Cooperative School Westminster School Montclair Kimberley Academy White Mountain School Moorestown Friends School Xavier High School Morris County School of Technology
About New Jersey SEEDS
Since its inception more than 20 years ago, New Jersey SEEDS has provided educational access for highly motivated, low-income students and created a viable path for them to achieve their full potential. SEEDS strives for a world in which young people's initiative, creativity and intellect can flourish without regard to socioeconomic status. To date, nearly 1,800 scholars have benefited from its programs. For more information, visit www.njseeds.org.
New Jersey SEEDS is grateful to the many individuals who provide major support for Scholars and Young Scholars Programs. In addition, we thank the following corporations and foundations for their support: Alfred J. Speak Scholarship Fund; Bank of America Charitable Foundation; Barclays; Capital Group Companies; Charles E. and Edna T. Brundage Foundation; Clara Louella Day Jeffery Charitable Residuary Trust; The Coach Foundation; Colgate-Palmolive Company; Curtis McGraw Foundation; D'Olier Foundation; David Mathey Foundation; Esther A. & Joseph Klingenstein Fund, Inc.; F.M. Kirby Foundation; Fred C. Rummel Foundation; Henry and Marilyn Taub Foundation; Henry S. and Agnes M. Truzack Foundation; Hess Corporation; Hillsdale Fund; Hyde and Watson Foundation; J. Seward Johnson, Sr. Charitable Trust; Jockey Hollow Foundation; John S. Scurci Foundation; Lillian P. Schenck Fund; Lucy and Eleanor S. Upton Charitable Foundation; NASDAQ OMX Group Educational Foundation; Norman and Bettina Roberts Foundation; Page and Otto Marx, Jr. Foundation; Page Hill Foundation; Piper Sutton Foundation; PNC Foundation; Rivendell Foundation; Union Foundation; Victoria Foundation; and William E. Simon Foundation.