In a heartwarming gesture of support for higher education, OceanFirst Foundation awarded $40,000 in scholarships to benefit 40 students at Brookdale Community College. Each student will receive a $1,000 scholarship to aid their academic pursuits.

During a special ceremony at the college, representatives from OceanFirst Bank and OceanFirst Foundation expressed their admiration for the students’ dedication to education. “We wanted to come out and show our appreciation for your eagerness to go to school, and we’re glad that we’re able to support you in that endeavor to start you on a good footprint going forward,” said Michele Wilson, VP Government Banking, OceanFirst Bank.

The Foundation emphasized its commitment to fostering educational opportunities and building partnerships with students. They encouraged students to explore employment opportunities within the bank, highlighting the diverse career paths available in the banking industry. Edward Moran, Senior Vice President, OceanFirst Bank, shared personal stories about the dynamic and rewarding nature of careers in banking.

Kathy Durante, Executive Director, OceanFirst Foundation, expressed the Bank’s desire to forge a stronger connection with their scholarship students and extended invitations to students to visit the bank, and explore various networking opportunities. She emphasized their commitment to being a resource beyond financial aid, encouraging students to reach out for support and guidance.

“OceanFirst Foundation proudly extends its support to a spectrum of initiatives, from youth development and affordable housing to healthcare and arts and culture, offering a broad range of opportunities and possibilities,” she said. “Additionally, I want to highlight another opportunity for those continuing their education towards a bachelor’s degree. If you’re currently at Brookdale and have plans to transition to a four-year institution, our scholarship support extends to The College of New Jersey (TCNJ), Rowan University, Stockton University, Georgian Court University, and Monmouth University. Explore these possibilities as you pursue your educational journey.”

The students shared their academic pursuits, among them were students studying health science, hospitality management, ESL classes, architecture, computer science, and radiology. Durante, extended invitations to students to visit the bank and explore various networking opportunities.

David M. Stout, Ph.D. President of Brookdale acknowledged scholarships’ critical role in enabling students to pursue higher education and encouraged them to continue to seek additional opportunities. “I want to express my sincere gratitude to OceanFirst,” he said. “Their unwavering generosity has bridged the financial gap for countless students, making higher education accessible. OceanFirst aligns with the mission of Brookdale, demonstrating a true commitment to giving back and investing in the community. Their exceptional support not only empowers dreams but also extends to their banking services, where they continue to set the standard for generosity. Thank you, OceanFirst, for being an outstanding partner in education and community enrichment.”

This collaboration between OceanFirst Foundation, OceanFirst Bank and Brookdale Community College is a testament to the positive impact businesses can have on education and community development. As the scholarship recipients continue their academic journeys, they are poised to make a lasting impact in their chosen fields, thanks to the invaluable support provided by OceanFirst Foundation.