Students from Rutherford, Teaneck, Carlstadt, Nutley and North Arlington. Bergen Community College at the Meadowlands awarded its first scholarships to five students of the College’s southern Bergen County campus.
Dr. Jose Adames, interim president of the College, thanked the benefactors funding the scholarships, including Philip Ciarco, who is a member of the both the College Board of Trustees and the Bergen Community College Foundation Board of Directors, and Dr. Ronald A. Milon, Director of the Meadowlands Campus.
Dr. Adames also thanked the Paramus-based Greater Alliance Federal Credit Union, which is funding a $1,000 scholarship, and the College Foundation, which raises funds for and awards all scholarships.
The following students received scholarships.
• Melina R. Velardo, of Rutherford: the Dill Family Scholarship for $1,000.
• Lori C. Persons, Teaneck, and Amanda V. Calvo, Carlstadt, each received the Bergen at the Meadowlands Scholarship $500 funded by Dr. Milon and a Bergen Community College General Scholarship, also $500.
• Gianna Giarrusso, Nutley: the Ciarco Family Foundation Scholarship, $1,000.
• Deidre Feliciano, North Arlington: the Greater Alliance Federal Credit Union Meadowlands Scholarship, $1,000.
“The generosity of donors such as the Ciarco and Dill families, and Greater Alliance is helping the College live up to its reputation as one of the finest institutions in the county,” Dr. Adames said during the awards ceremony at the Meadowlands on Dec. 7. “These scholarships bring the total of scholarship awarded by the Foundation to $232,000 this year. The Foundation has raised $19 million since its inception in 1982 and has provided $750,000 in scholarships in the past five years.
“I am pleased that every year so many of our students go on to top colleges such as Columbia, NYU, Brown, Rutgers and Montclair State universities,” he said.
One of the original supporters of opening a campus to serve southern Bergen County, Ciarco noted that the scholarships illustrate how much the campus in Lyndhurst has progressed.
“Ten years ago we faced a dilemma. Bergen Community College was not really serving this part of the county. It was too difficult to get to Paramus from here,” Ciarco said. “In 10 years, we have gone from a vision to having a southern Bergen campus and we are giving the first scholarship just four years after opening this facility.”
Since opening the facility in rented space during July of 2008, the College has purchased the five-story building and renovated it into a full campus. Enrollment has grown from 700 course takers in the fall of 2008 to more than 4,000 last spring, according to Dr. Milon. This fall, 777 students enrolled exclusively at the Meadowlands campus.
Bergen Community College (www.bergen.edu ) based in Paramus is a public two-year coeducational college, enrolling more than 17,000 students at locations in Paramus, the Philip J. Ciarco Jr. Learning Center in Hackensack and Bergen Community College at the Meadowlands in Lyndhurst. The College offers associate degree, certificate and continuing education programs in a variety of fields