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Centenary College Finishes First Semester of the Presidential Scholars Program

02/06/2014, 02:34 PM

Hackettstown, N.J. – The first semester of the new Presidential Scholars Program at Centenary College has come to a successful conclusion, with nine students engaged in research projects designed to help them get the most from their educational experience. Launched in 2013, this program was designed to attract students who have demonstrated strong academic credentials during their high school career to the Northwest New Jersey institution.

The minimum criteria to apply is a 3.4 cumulative high school GPA, as well as an SAT score of 1100 or equivalent ACT score.  The Presidential Scholars Program provides selected students with a 75 percent discounted rate of tuition for four years.  Those who are chosen must maintain a 3.5 GPA to be eligible for this benefit each year. 

Unlike a traditional scholarship opportunity, the Presidential Scholars Program provides unique leadership and research opportunities on campus to those who receive this honor. 

A few of the many highlights of student accomplishments include:

Kelly Petersen, a student from Avenel is a Biology Research Assistant.  This past semester, Petersen worked with Dr. Joseph Bucci, Assistant Professor of Biology, on parasite research.  She is re-creating the life cycle of a common bird parasite species that is transmitted by snails.  If successful, further studies investigating host/parasite relationships are planned.  This study will be presented at a conference later this spring.

Alan Sciarrillo, a Criminal Justice major from Edison, had the opportunity to study West African criminal justice systems and African Peacekeeping missions.  Sciarrillo also assisted and scheduled a visit and daily itinerary of a police commander from the Republic of Ghana. As part of this assignment, Sciarrillo accompanied the police commander (Mr. Justice Anthony Aduhene Benieh) and his Criminal Justice professor to the Morris County Public Safety Training Academy, the Morris County Office of Emergency Management (OEM) and the Mount Olive Township Police Department for scheduled tours.

Elaine Wessel came to Centenary College from Indianapolis because of Centenary’s outstanding reputation in the area of Equine Studies.  She aspires to work on the business side of the equestrian industry and aspires to host a Dance Marathon at Centenary College to raise funds for a local hospital. She has already been in contact with Purdue University and Children’s Miracle Network for feedback on how to successfully execute this endeavor.  This event will be open to members of the community and will take place by Spring 2015.

“This program was designed to reward students who have demonstrated academic excellence throughout high school and have aspirations to continue striving for success during their undergraduate career,” says Dr. Richard Sévère, Assistant Professor of English and Presidential Scholars Coordinator at Centenary College.  “The implementation and execution of this initiative is a testament to the institutional commitment to support our students and assist them with achieving their dreams.”

Applicants who are not selected for the Presidential Scholars Program could qualify for many other scholarships that significantly reduce the cost of tuition. The Presidential Scholars selected for the 2014-2015 academic year will be announced in March. For more information about Centenary College, visit www.centenarycollege.edu

Founded in 1867 by the Newark Conference of the United Methodist Church, Centenary College’s academic program integrates a solid liberal arts foundation with a strong career orientation. This mix is designed to provide an educational experience that prepares students to succeed in the increasingly global and interdependent world.

Centenary College’s main campus is located in Hackettstown, N.J., with its equestrian facility in Washington Township (Morris County).  The Centenary College School of Professional Studies offers degree programs in two locations: Hackettstown, Parsippany and Edison, and at corporate sites throughout New Jersey. 

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