WESTFIELD, NJ — Recent Westfield High School graduate Eric Storms is the winner of the third annual TAPinto Westfield Journalism Scholarship award. The $1,000 scholarship was given based on participation in the TAPinto Westfield student journalism program, willingness to learn and intent to continue using those skills in college.

While participating in the TAPinto Westfield program for three years, Storms wrote under the guidance of TAPinto Westfield owner and editor Jackie Lieberman and TAP into sports editor Tim LeCras.

“TAPinto Westfield gave me a great experience I’ll never forget,” Storms said. “Though it was centered around writing, it also helped me acquire other skills I will be able to use throughout my life. TAP was my first ever job experience and the first time I was forced out of my comfort zone, such as having to reach out and interview people I barely knew. Acquiring these people skills and going out into the community helped me become more extroverted and a better communicator in general. I know it will continue to benefit me in all aspects of my life from social skills to becoming a better writer to being organized and getting things done in the business world. I’m very grateful to have had this experience.” 

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Storms will attend Syracuse University in the fall, majoring in both communications at the Newhouse School and Business in the Whitman School in the honors program.

“As Syracuse is very expensive and I have three younger siblings that also need to go to college, every scholarship helps it become more attainable for me and my family,” Storms said. “Having scholarships and knowing I will have fewer loans to pay off will help me focus on my studies rather than having to worry about cost.”

Lieberman herself began her writing career while in high school.

“When I was a student, I was fortunate enough that people in the professional writing world mentored me and awarded me scholarships that made it possible for me to get a degree in journalism. I’m thankful for the opportunity to pay that forward to the next generation,” Lieberman said. “Teaching Eric and the other fantastic Westfield High School students in our program these past few years has truly been an honor."

The scholarship and program would not be possible without the support of the local businesses that advertise on TAPinto Westfield, she said.

“If you love TAPinto and what we do for our community, please take the time to thank those advertisers for making these things possible,” she said.

TAPinto Westfeld is seeking high school students to participate in its student journalism program for the 2017-2018 school year. To learn more, email jlieberman@tapinto.net.