EAST BRUNSWICK, NJ -  The "2019 Community Service Award" was presented by the East Brunswick Chapter #4855 of the AARP last week.  the award goes to a student from the East Brunswick Campus of the Middlesex Sounty Vocational and Technical Schools and consists of a framed certificate and a $250 check.  This year's winner was Franchesca Rodriquez of Perth Amboy.

Presenting the award was Hilly Fuchs, AARP President, and Michael Cappiello, Principal of MCVTS.  Cappiello spoke energetically of the 14 career programs available in East Brunswick.  "This year, " he said, "We actually had to turn away students."  He encouraged EB residents and AARP members to attend the upcoming June performances of Shakespeare's Julius Caesar, which will be presented in a contemporary, interactive style with audience members following the story through the hallways of the East Brunswick campus. (This production features Kaia Kendzulak of East Brunswick.)

He then shook the hand of and presented the award to Rodriguez, who is an artist in the Digital Film Program. Rodriguez, an Honor Student with a 4.5 average, will attend Monmouth University in the fall.

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The second honor was the "Anne Stevens Memorial Award" which is given annually to an outstanding nursing student from the Piscataway Campus of the Vocational and Technical Adult School.  The award also consists of a framed certificate and a $250 check. Rosemary Hoeler, Coordinator of the RN and RSN Programs  introduced this year's recipient Winnie Wai Lee.

The "Anne Stevens Award" was introduced many years ago by Murray Stevens who was the 5th President of the EB Chapter from 2001-2005. Stevens offered the award in the memory of his late wife Anne, as he wanted to honor her and her profession.  The tradition has been continued by Stevens' children marsha Ober, Karen Zweifler, and Stuart Stevens.

Before presenting the award, Hoeler described the competive and challenging program for adult students in the MCVTS nursing programs where the average student age is 30.

Winnie Lee described having been on the waiting list for the RN program for two years and the difficulty in holding down two jobs, rasing two children, and being a full -time student.  Her goal is to be an RN or a Nurse Practiioner when she has completed her studies.  Describing her difficult pregnancies as an epileptic, she said, "If I can take care of myself, I can take care of other people."

Following the award ceremony, Hilly Fuchs thanked MCVTS for donating a "personalized" AARP cake to the group and praised the members for their contributions to the annual Spring Food Drive to benefit MCFOODS, the county food bank.  He announced that the group would also organize a food collection at the East Brunswick Stop & Shop on August 3, 2019 on the AARP annual "Day of Service."

The East Brunswick AARP holds meetings on the second Tuesday of every month at  the Civic Center Firehouse on Rues Lane (near CVS) at 10:30 am, with no meetings scheduled in July and August.

Interested in joining?  Contact the people here.

For more information call Hilly Fuchs (President) at (732)238-6326 or Lorraine Shelters (Membership) at (732) 251-2414.