The Marianas Tourism Education Council will revive its MTEC Scholarship Program in school year 2021-2022, aimed at encouraging graduating high school seniors to pursue higher education.
The MTEC board will award a $2,000 scholarship and a $1,000 scholarship for two seniors from the class of 2022 who have been members of a MY WAVE (Marianas Youth Welcome All Visitors Enthusiastically) Club for at least one year in high school.
“We are encouraging the students to participate in a MY WAVE Club, which they can join starting from the 5th grade up to 12th grade level,” said acting MTEC chair Vicky Benavente. “The MTEC Scholarship is made possible through the work of the MTEC board of directors and from our generous sponsors and businesses who have a stake in the islands’ tourism and hospitality industry.”
The first MTEC Scholarship was issued in 2017 to Saipan Southern High graduate Renafe Aniga, who began studying Hospitality Management at University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Aniga recently graduated with a degree in psychology and reflected on the impact on her life of her involvement with MYWAVE and receiving the MTEC scholarship.
“I especially remembered the great influences of my life that helped me succeed, particularly the MY WAVE Club. Since my middle school years and all throughout high school [on] Saipan, I was heavily engaged with this student organization. My involvement as a member and an officer allowed me to improve myself as an individual while learning about the importance of the hospitality industry in the Marianas,” Aniga said. “Being in MY WAVE inspired me to pursue a degree in hospitality management. …This big move came with its challenges, financial and otherwise. Thankfully, through the MTEC Scholarship, I was able to afford and pursue higher education at a great institution. This aid alleviated one of the many pressures I had as a first-generation college student, allowing me to focus on my studies.”
To be eligible, applicants must meet the following requirements:
• Have at least one-year membership in a high school MY WAVE Club
• Submission of official transcript from last high school attended showing GPA of 3.0 or higher
• Recommendation letter from a current or former teacher, MY WAVE club adviser, counselor, or administrator
• Essay submission from applicant, describing career pathway/goals and purpose of study (300-500 -word limit, typed)
• Acceptance letter from university or college applied to
• Three proof of MY WAVE Club active participation
• Submission of the MY WAVE Club/Community Involvement Summary
Applications will be available at the MVA office when the new school year starts.
In addition to Benavente, MTEC board members include Priscilla M. Iakopo (Marianas Visitors Authority), Martin Duenas (Marianas Visitors Authority), Frankie Eliptico (Northern Marianas College), Larry Lee, Naomi Nishimura (CNMI Public School System), Gordon Marciano (PDI), Catherine Perry (Integrity Communications), and Glenn Policare (Kanoa Resort). (PR)