(MTEC) —   The  Marianas  Tourism  Education  Council will revive its 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 or 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 MTEC acting Chairwoman 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  awarded 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 MY WAVE 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 in 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 Mariana Islands,” 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 advisor, counselor or administrator

• Essay submission from applicant, describing career pathway/goals and purpose of study (300-500 words essay 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 Marianas Visitors Authority 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).

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