On Friday, August 19th, friends, family, and the community gathered at TK’s Ice Cream in Cream Ridge, New Jersey for the Automotive Technology Scholarship 2022 Award Ceremony. Greeted by perfect weather and the kitsch, nostalgic atmosphere of TK’s retro themed decor, the Mid-Jersey Region of the Antique Automobile Club of America unanimously voted Brookdale Student, Emma Brookes, as the recipient of the scholarship. The Antique Automobile Club has been awarding students this scholarship for over twenty years, with many using the scholarship as a way to advance further in their studies and academic careers.

“I would like to thank the Antique Automobile Club of America, and especially Douglas Watt for coming to Brookdale to visit our program and meet some of our students,” Ryan Marlowe, liaison for the Automotive Tech Program at Brookdale Community College said. “In today’s times, there are many people who dream of attending college. But for many, they cannot for various reasons. For most of these people, it is because they do not have the financial means available to them. But it is because of generous organizations like the Antique Club of America that makes someone’s dream a reality.”

The Antique Automobile Club of America chose Emma Brookes for the scholarship for many reasons. Not only is she an exemplary student, but she is always the first one to volunteer to assist other students with their labs. Brookes takes great pride in her work as a student employee in the Automotive Tech team, but she is also a great role model to new students entering into the program.

While receiving the award, Emma Brookes gave a brief speech, feeling honored to have been chosen as the recipient.“I just want to take some time to definitely say thank you for choosing me for this scholarship,” she said, adding, “this will really help me further my education and get me down the path I want to take in growing and learning here at Brookdale. I want to get into Restoration, and this will certainly provide me with the path to do so.”

Emma Brookes said she was originally interested in the AutoTech program at Brookdale when she purchased an old truck she started working on a few years ago. “I was not entirely sure what I was doing,” she said in discussion, “so I said to myself ‘well, try the program – see where it goes.’ I just started really enjoying the classes and the program, and one thing led to another. It was sort of this ‘dabbling’ that just really started working in the end.” And for her, she plans to graduate from the AutoTech program in Spring ‘23, while continuing to work at her job at Jaguar.

The Automotive Technology Program at Brookdale was not only perfect for students like Emma Brookes to explore more of their passions and interests, but has been incredibly beneficial to others who have entered the program. Brookdale Community College offers three Auto Technology Degrees that provide students with an associate’s degree upon completion, and also offer two NATEF Certified Programs supported by the General Motors Corporation. Students at Brookdale also have the opportunity to study at other institutions upon completion, such as the Pennsylvania College of Technology, to earn their bachelor’s degree. Brookdale’s programs are highly rated by the National Institute “Automotive Service Excellence (ASE), and can truly be the kickstart to an amazing future in the industry.