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Scholarship success at the San Joaquin Valley Chapter.

In 1999, the NDTA San Joaquin Valley (SJV) Chapter became serious about raising money for our scholarship fund. Each year Green Valley Transportation hosted an open house barbeque for their customers. Due to government ethics regulations, government employees were discouraged from attending. In response, Green Valley asked for a three dollar donation which made it possible for the government employees to attend (the donation has increased over the years, but so has the attendance). The money collected from tickets and raffles was matched by Green Valley and donated to the SJV Chapter Scholarship Fund.

In 2000, the chapter awarded its first scholarship. Subsequently, the chapter began hosting golf tournaments each fall and spring to raise money. At every monthly meeting, the chapter asks its carriers for donations of hats, cups, shirts, gift cards, etc. so it can hold drawings for these items, as well as a 50/50 drawing. Five years ago, the chapter decided to hold a crab feed. This event was quite popular and profitable.

The SJV Chapter has also been blessed to receive other contributions from its commercial industry partners. Chapter leadership continually reaches out to them for donations and to participate/assist with events, and these industry partners often provide the chapter with generous donations for the scholarship fund.

The most important member of the SJV Board of Directors is the scholarship chairperson. The chairperson has to be energetic and totally dedicated to the position. He/she visits high schools, community colleges, and vocational schools to tell students about the program and distribute applications. In addition, he/she contacts local newspapers and ensures the application is posted online. At each monthly meeting, he/she talks about the scholarship program encouraging membership to spread the word and has applications available.

Although there is only a three-month window for submitting/receiving the applications, the scholarship chairperson and the entire SJV Chapter works year round raising money to award scholarships. Once the deadline has arrived for submissions, a committee is established for evaluation of the applications. The proposed winners and award amounts are presented to the SJV Board of Directors for approval. Once approved, the chairperson contacts the high schools of the winners and arranges for a SJV representative to attend the awards night and present the student the award in front of their peers. An award dinner is then arranged for late June (as part of the installation of officers) to honor all the awardees.

This past June, the SJV Chapter awarded 27 academic/vocational scholarships which totaled more than $24,000. During the past six years, the chapter has awarded more than $120,000 in scholarships. It is the dedication, participation, and generosity of the NDTA San Joaquin Valley Chapter membership and commercial industry partners that has made the chapter so successful in this endeavor.

By Terri Dalton

President, NDTA San Joaquin Valley

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Title Annotation:CHAPTER SPOTLIGHT
Author:Dalton, Terri
Publication:Defense Transportation Journal
Date:Dec 1, 2015
Words:476
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