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  • 39th Annual Awards Celebration Raises a Record-Breaking $2 million

    Otober 29, 2020 - Tri-County Scholarship Fund raised a record-breaking $2 million in scholarship funds through its 39th Annual Awards Celebration on October 26, the organization’s first virtual event, livestreamed to over 1,200 guests, friends and supporters. Fulfilling the mission of Tri-County, the scholarships will go to financially disadvantaged Kindergarten - 12th grade students in Morris, Passaic and Sussex counties so they can obtain quality, values-based educations at accredited private elementary and secondary schools. This year's virtual gala honored three distinguished members of the New Jersey community. The Hall of Fame Award was presented to Mr. John Howard, Chairman and CEO of Truist Insurance Holdings who was introduced by Mr. Paul Krump, Vice Chair of Chubb Group, Global Underwriting and Claims. The Leadership Award was presented to Trish O’Keefe, President of Morristown Medical Center, who was introduced by Mr. Brian Gragnolati , CEO of Atlantic Heath System. The annual Making A Difference Award was presented to Bob and Sue Sameth, multi-decade supporters of Tri-County Scholarship Fund, who were introduced by Fr. Brian Sullivan, Pastor of the Church of Christ the King in New Vernon where the Sameths have been parishioners for 45 years. The Most Reverend Kevin Sweeney, Bishop of Paterson, offered the evening’s invocation, and introduced the featured student speaker, Tri-County Scholarship recipient and Paterson resident, Guadalupe Aguilar, Mary Help of Christians Academy high school senior, and Senior Class President. After her moving speech, Guadalupe was presented with the new “Bishop Kevin Sweeney Tri-County Scholarship.” Dozens of Tri-County students and their families tuned in to view the event celebrating the 56 Tri-County partner schools that all opened for the school year with safe social distancing and COVID health precautions. Celebrity athlete appearances were made by past Tri-County Scholarship recipient, Tim Thomas, Paterson Catholic graduate, Villanova basketball star, and NBA star, by NY Jets Quarterback Sam Darnold, and by Jared Stroud, current # 8 midfielder on the NY Red Bulls soccer team. “A highlight of the evening was the $100,000 challenge donation from an anonymous donor that was matched by donors texting their support from home, via their cell phones,” said Prudence Pigott, President of Tri-County Scholarship Fund. “The need for scholarships is particularly great this year, as the COVID pandemic has caused many inner-city families to lose their jobs and small businesses. We are thrilled and grateful to our outstanding event honorees and to our generous supporters who answered this need with their exceptional donations.” Remarked honoree John Howard, “My wife Fran and I have been pleased to support this great cause and to witness the accomplishments of the Tri-County scholarship students as they go to college and careers.” John and Fran Howard, as well as 2020 honorees Bob and Sue Sameth, are Knights and Dames of the Order of Malta, a 900 year old Catholic lay religious order dedicated to helping the poor and the sick. Honoree, Trish O’Keefe is a graduate of DePaul Catholic High School. O’Keefe and Morristown Medical Center have a long history of supporting Tri-County Scholarship Fund and introducing scholarship students to career opportunities in the healthcare field. For the current school year Tri-County Scholarship Fund has awarded over 720 scholarships for financially disadvantaged Kindergarten – 12th grade students to attend 56 different partner schools. This includes $500,000 in Emergency scholarships for families hard hit by the COVID crisis. Over the past 39 years, $32 million has been raised by the organization to fund more than 33,000 scholarships awarded to needy children. Scholarship recipients have gone on to the top colleges in New Jersey and throughout the country. "While Tri-County was able to fund scholarships for 720 students this school year, we have another 2,000 students still on the waiting list,” said Tri-County trustee and event Co-chair Marc Adee, CEO of Crum and Forster. “By helping one child at a time, we can create an enormous ripple effect, touching the family, the community, and improving the lives of generations to come."

  • Joshua Guardia, 2012 Tri-County Alum, Medical Student

    It was his class in anatomy and physiology in 2012, senior year at DePaul Catholic High School, that first peaked Joshua’s interest in medicine. Thanks to that experience, he decided to major in Biology as a pre-med student at the University of Scranton. After graduating in 2016 with a Bachelor of Science degree, he was determined to become a physician. While he prepared for the MCATs (Medical College Admission Test), he took a full-time job as a nurse’s aide in the intensive care unit of a Wilkes-Barre, PA hospital. During this time, he also served as a Spanish translator for many patients. He became increasingly enamored of primary care as he worked closely with every member of the medical team. “Many patients were from immigrant families,” said Joshua, “and I learned a great deal about their lives. They reminded me of my own family’s Peruvian roots and what they had to overcome. It was impressive.” In 2017, he moved back to New Jersey to become a medical scribe for an orthopedic surgeon for a year, another assignment he totally enjoyed. Each new job served to further his determination to obtain his medical degree. Hoping to increase his chances to be accepted at medical school, he attended Rutgers Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences 2018-2020 and earned a master’s in biology. That summer he did a summer internship at Pfizer as a Medical Affairs Associate. Determined to succeed the third time he took the MCATs, he achieved the scores he wanted and was accepted by Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in Piscataway. Five months into his freshman year, Joshua now feels he has a handle on medical school and is looking forward to completing his medical degree. He intends to specialize in primary care or sports medicine. Said Joshua, ““Tri-County allowed me to receive a well-rounded education at DePaul, which sparked my interest in medicine and enabled me to be successful at the University of Scranton. I want to say thank you to the Tri-County donors, who gave me an invaluable opportunity. The Tri-County Scholarship Fund also has given my sister Izabella, now a senior at DePaul, the same opportunity. Our family truly appreciates everything you have done for us.”

  • Monica Pope, 2008 Tri-County Alumna, Committed to Giving Back

    It’s not easy balancing a demanding full-time career while also becoming a successful entrepreneur, but somehow Tri-County alumna Monica Pope accomplishes it with grace, style, and passion. Monica is a 2008 graduate of Paterson Catholic High School. Her attendance was supported by the Tri-County Scholarship Fund, awarding her a scholarship each year for 4 years. She went on to Fairleigh Dickinson University on a 4-year Hennessey Scholarship, a program established by Tri-County’s co-founder Ed Hennessey in collaboration with FDU. Committed to giving back to her community, her first job after graduation was helping abused children and families through the Child Protection and Permanency Department, a division of the NJ Department of Children and Families. “I loved it,” says Monica, “because I was helping protect vulnerable children and families, often through the court system.” As a strong proponent of self-improvement, she attended FDU at night to earn her master’s degree in public administration. Six years later, being very knowledgeable about the court system, she took a new job as Court Administrator for the Essex County Superior Court. She now works closely with attorneys and judges, facilitating efficient services and fair treatment for defendants. At an early age Monica also grew a passion for becoming a real estate entrepreneur. Growing up, she experienced first-hand the challenges her family faced in their small painting business. She put her combined interests in business and real estate to use when she was just 23, buying a small rental property in Passaic County, NJ. Two years later she bought a rental property in Ohio. She gradually purchased other rental properties. Says Monica, “I try to be an amazing landlord and give tenants great quality. I manage my properties myself and try to help my community. I recently prioritized renting a 4-unit property to community victims whose homes had burned down.” Monica continues, “I want to give back in whatever way I can. People help you when they see you trying, whatever your circumstances. I really want to find my voice as a woman to talk to others about empowerment – to be an instrument to inspire them. 'Education is the reason I can do what I do. I never could have done what I’m doing without my education, and Tri-County helped me get that. I’d like to say thank you to all Tri-County donors for your support!”

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  • Emergency Fund | Tri-County Scholarship Fund

    Ways to Give Donate Fund A Student Planned Gifts Emergency Fund Support Events Fundraise CIRCUMSTANCES CHANGE... Often without warning— ​ Unfortunately sudden sickness, death of a parent, job loss, or loss of a home, can spell financial catastrophe for the families of current scholarship students. These life crises can jeopardize the family’s ability to pay their share of school tuition, right at the very time when the family would least want to further disrupt their children’s lives by removing them from their school. In these times of crisis and great need, the caring school administrators at our Tri-County partner schools come to us looking for emergency assistance. ​ Every year we help children in special emergency situations remain in their quality schools. The Tri-County Emergency Fund allows donors to help those most in need with a bridge to get through critical, unplanned situations. These families in crisis can take some comfort in knowing that their children will have the security and continuity of remaining in their current school. ​ ​ WE WANT TO HELP THEM ALL. Can you help us lift up just one more? Emergency Fund Emergency Fund

  • Donate | Tri-County Scholarship Fund | New Jersey nonprofit

    DONATE Questions? Who is eligible for a scholarship? Tri-County Scholarship awards are based upon financial need. Any child, K-12, living in Morris, Passaic, or Sussex Counties may apply for a scholarship. What is the demographic profile of scholarship recipients? The current demographics of Tri-County scholarship recipients are represented by: 72% Latino, 12% African American, 11% Caucasion, and 5% other. This breakdown reflects the population composition of Paterson and Passaic, two of New Jersey’s urban centers with relatively large Hispanic communities. Why does Tri-County focus on K-12 scholarships instead of college scholarships? Without the opportunity to attend safe, quality, private K-12 schools, many inner-city and financially needy children will not acquire the academic qualifications or personal skills and character traits required to attend and excel in college. The goal of Tri-County and its partner schools is to produce the most academically prepared students possible so that they can take advantage of the scholarships available to qualified college applicants. Tri-County students annually achieve a high school graduation rate of 98-100% with virtually all graduates going on to attend college. How are funds distributed between grade school and high school scholarships? Scholarships for grades K-8 are usually $2000 / year. Tri-County Scholarships for high school are typically $4,000/ year. Each year there is also an additional category of high school scholarship award: Tri-County Freedom Scholarships that award $5,000 to incoming Freshmen who demonstrate particular academic promise by earning a B average in middle school. The student must complete a special application, including teacher recommendations. The Freedom Scholarship is awarded for all four years of high school if the student maintains the “B” grade point average throughout high school. Who qualifies for scholarships? Do students have to maintain a specific GPA? Scholarships are awarded based upon demonstrated financial need. Parents apply for their children by submitting their family financial information on the confidential, online FACTS form. With the exception of the high school Freedom Scholars program (requiring a B average), Tri-County does not have an academic merit screen for its scholarships. However, students must re-apply each year, and pass all courses in order for their scholarship to be renewed for the following year. How are the scholarship recipients selected? Tri-County works with the confidential online system called FACTS, the nation’s leading Tuition Management and Financial Aid Assessment software company for private and faith-based schools. Families are required to complete an online application which analyzes income and expenses relative to family size. The Tri-County staff then reviews all applications and makes the final scholarship decisions. Tri-County is committed to continuing scholarship support for each recipient through the conclusion of that child’s K-12 education, assuming the family re-applies by the February 15 deadline each year, and that the financial need persists. Tri-County’s intent to provide educational continuity for the individual child is why existingscholarship recipients are given preference over new applicants during the process of awarding scholarships for each school year. Do the families of scholarship recipients contribute to school tuition? Yes. Families contribute a portion of the tuition. Family contribution is typically 20% – 30% of annual tuition. The amount varies depending on the family’s circumstances, other sources of financial assistance, and special arrangements made with the respective school. What kind of schools do scholarship recipients attend? Tri-County scholarship recipients attend values-based, private schools: Catholic, Christian, Hebrew, and schools with no religious affiliation. Several schools are independent, and some are under the auspices of the Diocese. Many of these schools have a long-standing mission to serve the inner-city poor. Regardless of religious affiliation, all financially needy children living in Morris, Passaic or Sussex counties may apply to any of the schools served by Tri-County. What do you mean by "values-based" education? Tri-County defines a values-based education as one that is informed by the Judeo-Christian principles upon which America was founded. Key to a values-based education is the emphasis on the irreplaceable dignity of every human person. From this understanding flow the core human values of equality, freedom, honesty, integrity, respect, solidarity, charity, trust, hard work, and service to others. Examples of a values based program are the school honor code, compulsory community service, admissions standards that celebrate diversity, and a curriculum that includes personal character development. What is the "Freedom-Scholars" program? The Freedom Scholars program is an enhanced scholarship opportunity for the most academically gifted 8th graders who also qualify financially. Freedom Scholars are chosen from scholarship applicants who have consistently maintained a B average or better throughout their middle school academic career. The application requires the regular FACTS family financial information PLUS an essay written by the student, the middle school transcript, and a teacher recommendation. A $5,000 scholarship is awarded to each Freedom Scholar. This award is matched by the student’s high school. Freedom Scholars are given mentors who meet with them monthly to assess their progress, making certain they have everything they need to succeed. The students are also given special help with SAT prep and with college essay prep. What do "Freedom-Scholars" go on to do after high school? Tri-County graduated its first class of Freedom Scholars in June of 2015. 100% of these students enrolled in a 4-year college program. The Class of 2016 graduated 10 high school Freedom Scholars. The high school Class of 2020 has 21 Freedom Scholars It is a competitive program with many qualified applicants. The number of awards is limited only by available funding. Tri-County hopes to award more Freedom Scholarships each year as funding for this program increases. Does Tri-County support underserved students in suburban areas of Northern New Jersey? While most Tri-county scholarship recipients come from inner-city environments, Tri-County also provides scholarships to financially needy children in suburban and rural environments within Morris, Passaic and Sussex counties. How many scholarships does Tri-County award each school year? How many deserving students remain on the Waiting List? Tri-County’s budget allows us currently to award 500 scholarships each year. There are, however, an additional 1,500 equally deserving students on our Scholarship Waiting List for any given school year. Tri-County’s goal is to raise additional funds in order to help more of these needy children, so that they too may be able to experience the freedom and opportunity made possible by a safe, quality education. What is the annual scholarship application deadline? Families must submit all materials and financial information must to Tri-County by February 15 of each year. What is the process and usual timing for awarding scholarships? New students apply to their preferred private school by the school’s own application deadline. Students indicate the name of their intended or continuing school on their Tri-County application. All scholarship application materials and financial information must be submitted to Tri-County by February 15. After the February 15 application deadline, Tri-County assesses the financial need of each applicant. Families are typically informed of regular and Freedom scholarship awards by early May. In some years this notification process continues into the summer, as is the happy case when additional scholarship funds become available. Financially deserving children who do not receive scholarship awards in the regular process are placed on a Scholarship Waiting List. Depending upon Tri-County funding, a small number of 5 to 15 additional, “wait listed” children may receive scholarship awards over the summer time. TRI-COUNTY Scholarship Fund 1/1 Hundreds of students are still on our waiting list, hoping that Tri-County Scholarship Fund will secure donations to offer them the game-changing scholarship that they need to attend safe, quality, and values-centered private schools. TCSF is a registered 501(c)(3) charity and is tax deductible within the guidelines of U.S. law. Tax ID No. 22-2354475. ​ You will receive an email donation receipt as your official record for tax purposes and regular updates on how your gift helps gives our scholarship recipients Freedom through Education.. If you have any questions, please email us at . office@tcsfund.org Our online donations are secure. We know that some of our generous donors still prefer to mail or phone in their donations. Please mail check to: Tri-County Scholarship Fund 14 West Main Street Mendham, NJ 07945 ​ or call (973)984-9600 Emergency Fund CAN YOU HELP? More Ways to Give FUND A STUDENT scholarship program FUND A STUDENT SCHOLARSHIP at one of three scholarship levels with your online one-time donation or with monthly recurring payments. Fund A Student Now! Tri-County's Fund A Student scholarship program matches donors with low-income students who receive our scholarship assistance. ​ Fund a Student Scholarship Levels: (one year) $5000 supports a high school Freedom Scholar $4000 supports a high school student $2000 supports a K-8th grade student ​ For multi-year scholarships, consider creating a tribute or named scholarship with the assistance of Tri-County. Learn More CREATE A TRIBUTE SCHOLARSHIP Contact us to discuss creating a tribute sholarship that will lift students from our waiting list. Contact Us More Ways to Give Let your birthday, anniversary, wedding, holiday, milestone, or service project benefit needy students: Start a Fundraiser Join Tri-County's Legacy Society with your planned gift to secure the future for needy students. Planned Giving Support Tri-County's fundraising events to raise the necessary funds to provide scholarships and to raise awareness of our cause. Support Events

  • Fund A Student Donations | Tri-County Scholarship Fund

    Frequently asked questions Who is eligible for a scholarship? Tri-County Scholarship awards are based upon financial need. Any child, K-12, living in Morris, Passaic, or Sussex Counties may apply for a scholarship. What is the demographic profile of scholarship recipients? The current demographics of Tri-County scholarship recipients are represented by: 72% Latino, 12% African American, 11% Caucasion, and 5% other. This breakdown reflects the population composition of Paterson and Passaic, two of New Jersey’s urban centers with relatively large Hispanic communities. Why does Tri-County focus on K-12 scholarships instead of college scholarships? Without the opportunity to attend safe, quality, private K-12 schools, many inner-city and financially needy children will not acquire the academic qualifications or personal skills and character traits required to attend and excel in college. The goal of Tri-County and its partner schools is to produce the most academically prepared students possible so that they can take advantage of the scholarships available to qualified college applicants. Tri-County students annually achieve a high school graduation rate of 98-100% with virtually all graduates going on to attend college. How are funds distributed between grade school and high school scholarships? Scholarships for grades K-8 are usually $2000 / year. Tri-County Scholarships for high school are typically $4,000/ year. Each year there is also an additional category of high school scholarship award: Tri-County Freedom Scholarships that award $5,000 to incoming Freshmen who demonstrate particular academic promise by earning a B average in middle school. The student must complete a special application, including teacher recommendations. The Freedom Scholarship is awarded for all four years of high school if the student maintains the “B” grade point average throughout high school. Who qualifies for scholarships? Do students have to maintain a specific GPA? Scholarships are awarded based upon demonstrated financial need. Parents apply for their children by submitting their family financial information on the confidential, online FACTS form. With the exception of the high school Freedom Scholars program (requiring a B average), Tri-County does not have an academic merit screen for its scholarships. However, students must re-apply each year, and pass all courses in order for their scholarship to be renewed for the following year. How are the scholarship recipients selected? Tri-County works with the confidential online system called FACTS, the nation’s leading Tuition Management and Financial Aid Assessment software company for private and faith-based schools. Families are required to complete an online application which analyzes income and expenses relative to family size. The Tri-County staff then reviews all applications and makes the final scholarship decisions. Tri-County is committed to continuing scholarship support for each recipient through the conclusion of that child’s K-12 education, assuming the family re-applies by the February 15 deadline each year, and that the financial need persists. Tri-County’s intent to provide educational continuity for the individual child is why existingscholarship recipients are given preference over new applicants during the process of awarding scholarships for each school year. Do the families of scholarship recipients contribute to school tuition? Yes. Families contribute a portion of the tuition. Family contribution is typically 20% – 30% of annual tuition. The amount varies depending on the family’s circumstances, other sources of financial assistance, and special arrangements made with the respective school. What kind of schools do scholarship recipients attend? Tri-County scholarship recipients attend values-based, private schools: Catholic, Christian, Hebrew, and schools with no religious affiliation. Several schools are independent, and some are under the auspices of the Diocese. Many of these schools have a long-standing mission to serve the inner-city poor. Regardless of religious affiliation, all financially needy children living in Morris, Passaic or Sussex counties may apply to any of the schools served by Tri-County. What do you mean by "values-based" education? Tri-County defines a values-based education as one that is informed by the Judeo-Christian principles upon which America was founded. Key to a values-based education is the emphasis on the irreplaceable dignity of every human person. From this understanding flow the core human values of equality, freedom, honesty, integrity, respect, solidarity, charity, trust, hard work, and service to others. Examples of a values based program are the school honor code, compulsory community service, admissions standards that celebrate diversity, and a curriculum that includes personal character development. What is the "Freedom-Scholars" program? The Freedom Scholars program is an enhanced scholarship opportunity for the most academically gifted 8th graders who also qualify financially. Freedom Scholars are chosen from scholarship applicants who have consistently maintained a B average or better throughout their middle school academic career. The application requires the regular FACTS family financial information PLUS an essay written by the student, the middle school transcript, and a teacher recommendation. A $5,000 scholarship is awarded to each Freedom Scholar. This award is matched by the student’s high school. Freedom Scholars are given mentors who meet with them monthly to assess their progress, making certain they have everything they need to succeed. The students are also given special help with SAT prep and with college essay prep. What do "Freedom-Scholars" go on to do after high school? Tri-County graduated its first class of Freedom Scholars in June of 2015. 100% of these students enrolled in a 4-year college program. The Class of 2016 graduated 10 high school Freedom Scholars. The high school Class of 2020 has 21 Freedom Scholars It is a competitive program with many qualified applicants. The number of awards is limited only by available funding. Tri-County hopes to award more Freedom Scholarships each year as funding for this program increases. Does Tri-County support underserved students in suburban areas of Northern New Jersey? While most Tri-county scholarship recipients come from inner-city environments, Tri-County also provides scholarships to financially needy children in suburban and rural environments within Morris, Passaic and Sussex counties. How many scholarships does Tri-County award each school year? How many deserving students remain on the Waiting List? Tri-County’s budget allows us currently to award 500 scholarships each year. There are, however, an additional 1,500 equally deserving students on our Scholarship Waiting List for any given school year. Tri-County’s goal is to raise additional funds in order to help more of these needy children, so that they too may be able to experience the freedom and opportunity made possible by a safe, quality education. What is the annual scholarship application deadline? Families must submit all materials and financial information must to Tri-County by February 15 of each year. What is the process and usual timing for awarding scholarships? New students apply to their preferred private school by the school’s own application deadline. Students indicate the name of their intended or continuing school on their Tri-County application. All scholarship application materials and financial information must be submitted to Tri-County by February 15. After the February 15 application deadline, Tri-County assesses the financial need of each applicant. Families are typically informed of regular and Freedom scholarship awards by early May. In some years this notification process continues into the summer, as is the happy case when additional scholarship funds become available. Financially deserving children who do not receive scholarship awards in the regular process are placed on a Scholarship Waiting List. Depending upon Tri-County funding, a small number of 5 to 15 additional, “wait listed” children may receive scholarship awards over the summer time. FUND A STUDENT scholarship program

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