SPARTA, NJ – Four college bound students have been awarded the Ralph Rojas Scholarship, presented by the Sparta VFW.  According to Commander Pete Litchfield the scholarship committee selected the five basted on their application, essay and letter of recommendation.

Mary Cabassa, Olivia Finkeldie, Alexander Foster, Lawrence McKeon, and Margaret Piwko each received a $1,500 scholarship to offset costs associated with attending school.

Cabassa is attending Scranton University where she is a biology major. 

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Finkeldie is heading to Colgate University to study International Relations.

Foster is heading out to the University of North Dakota where he will be majoring in Commercial Aviation.

McKeon will be attending County College of Morris pursing studies in the nursing program.

Piwko will be attending Syracuse University where she will be double majoring in marketing and advertising.

The scholarship committee had 16 applicants to evaluate this year according to Stan Tryba, VFW Post Quartermaster and Scholarship Committee Chairman.  The other committee members are:

  • Pete Litchfield – VFW Post Commander,
  • Douglas Nobile- Post Vice Commander,
  • Ron Pace – VFW member,
  • Bill Miller – VFW member,
  • Jackie O’Donnel – VFW supporter,
  • John Schoch – VFW supporter,
  • Paul Corcoran – VFW supporter

The Scholarship was created in the memory of Korean War Veteran Ralph Rojas for Sussex County veterans and their spouses and dependents who are pursuing a degree in a technical or trade school or undergraduate or post graduate degree.  It can be applied for annually, as long as the applicants meet the qualifications.

It was also available this year to active duty military personnel and their dependents stationed at Picatinny Arsenal. Sussex County students who have been accepted in an ROTC program or Service Academy or school. 

The scholarship is funded by primarily through the annual Christmas Tree sale along with smaller private donations throughout the year, according to Tryba. 

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