PATERSON, NJ- For the 128 college-bound seniors from high schools across Paterson that were recognized prior to Wednesday’s Board of Education meeting the scholarships they received are an important financial boost to their ability to attend a four-year university. For Superintendent Eileen Shafer, the award of scholarships of more than $10,000 each shows that Paterson “students are proving that they are as able and talented as every other student across the nation, and that they have a very promising future.”

The list of colleges from which students received the scholarships is as diverse as Paterson’s student body ranging from local schools such as Seton Hall, Bloomfield College, and Caldwell University, to those well beyond Paterson’s borders including Virginia State University, New England College, and Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Florida.

Saying he was “proud” to see the students recognized, Board of Education Commissioner Emanuel Capers recalled meeting one of the students in her freshman year and learning that she didn’t believe she’d have the opportunity to go to college in the US because of her “family background.” However, he continued, by continuing to offer college tours, opportunities to speak with past graduates, and other resources, she, and the 127 other students that received scholarships are “erasing the stigma that Paterson students can’t achieve their academic goals.”