The Greater New Jersey Motorcoach Association announced the winners of the Third Annual Scholarship Awards for 2021 at their Annual Member Meeting. The event was held Oct. 7 at the Resorts Casino Hotel in Atlantic City.
The program was developed to promote higher education goals of Members and their families, whether it be to pursue a college degree or a trade certification. The scholarship program is supported by fundraising efforts. This year, GNJMA held an online auction in July, and its annual golf outing on Oct. 6 to benefit the program.
Two recipients are selected by a volunteer Scholarship Committee by reviewing blind applications. The winners for 2021 are Madison Butler, nominated by Lisa Butler from Turning Stone Casino, and Reagan Ertel, nominated by Mark Ertel from Trans Bridge Lines. Each received a check for $1,500 and a plaque.
“I am so honored and thankful to have received this award and astounding opportunity,” said Butler, who is studying to be a teacher.
“I was always so lucky to have such amazing and influential teachers growing up — maybe some could even say that affected my career choices,” she wrote in her scholarship application. “Teaching adds purpose to your life. I hope to go to college and major in early childhood education from preschool to sixth grade. I hope to get a good internship while there.
“I also aspire to include music into my career in some way,” she continued. “Therefore, I do plan on taking up a few music related courses in college. After college, I hope to obtain a stable teaching job in an elementary school.”.
Ertel plans to earn a degree in business administration, and then her master’s.
“I am honored to have had the opportunity to apply and even more stoked to hear that I have been selected as the winner,” she said.
In her scholarship application, Ertel wrote: “After graduation from a master’s degree program, I would like to start a career in the travel industry. I love learning about new places, assisting others, and overall meeting new people from other places. Seeing how others live and travel is interesting to me, and I plan to help guide them through their experiences.”
Full-time employees or the dependent children of full-time employees of Operator Member companies are eligible to apply for scholarships, as are the employees of Allied Members companies and their dependent children.
Tim Stout, president of GNJMA, congratulated the winners and thanked the Scholarship Committee members for their volunteerism. The group includes Rich Eckelson, of Caesars Entertainment; Roy Furo, of Prevost; Meg Lewis, of Resorts; Tony Mongiovi, of TEMSA; Jonathan Robbins, of ABC Companies; and Michael Trageser and Steve Weiss, of MCI/NFI.
The GNJMA is a group of leaders in the motorcoach, casino and travel industry that represents bus operators and owners in New Jersey and its region. The association works in cooperation with industry associations, local, state, and federal agencies, legislators, vendors, attractions, and destinations to promote the betterment and welfare of the motorcoach industry, their members, and association objectives.
The association promotes safety in the motorcoach industry by sponsoring safety workshops for bus drivers, driver excellence award programs, inspection workshops, a scholarship program and industry professional awards.