Archive for January, 2012

Environmental Schollarship

January 6, 2012

The Hackensack Riverkeeper is inviting college-bound students to apply for an environmental scholarship. Although this award is limited to students from participating New Jersey schools, I think this information is worth sharing. Hopefully it will serve as a model for other school districts.

From Captain Bill Sheehan, Hackensack Riverkeeper:

2012 Ron Vellekamp Environmental Scholarship

 Group seeks the best, brightest – and greenest – students in their watershed 

Hackensack Riverkeeper is now accepting applications for the 2012 Ron Vellekamp Environmental Scholarship. Now in its twelfth year, the program was created in 2001 to support college-bound high school seniors who excel academically and who demonstrate a strong commitment to the environment.

All told, seniors at sixty-six Bergen, Hudson and Rockland County high schools are eligible for the award. Why those sixty-six schools and not all the high schools in those counties? Because in order to be eligible to apply, students must reside and/or attend school within the 210 square-mile Hackensack River Watershed.

Teachers and guidance counselors are invited to submit applications on behalf of deserving students; and each school may nominate one student. A panel of Hackensack Riverkeeper Trustees and staffers led by Captain Bill Sheehan will review each application. Among other criteria, the panel will consider each applicant’s academic achievements, environmental extra-curricular activities and future plans. The $1000 Scholarship is unrestricted and can be used for any required purchases during the student’s first year at college. 

“Last year despite our liberal application criteria and the fact that all sixty-six guidance departments were notified of the scholarship in early January, only two students applied,” explained Program Director Hugh Carola. “Unfortunately neither student lived or matriculated within our watershed, and so the 2011 scholarship went un-granted. We do not want a reprise of that situation this year.”

Full scholarship application criteria (in all its ease and liberality) are available online at or by calling 201-968-0808.  A list of all watershed municipalities is available on the “Links” page of the Website. For those residing in bi-watershed communities like Bayonne, Paramus or Ramapo some additional sleuthing (or a phone call to scholarship administrator Carola) is necessary to determine a student’s eligibility.

Applications must be postmarked no later than April 23, 2012 – one day after Earth Day. The winner will be chosen no later than June 1. 

The late Ronald Vellekamp was a science teacher in Ridgefield, New Jersey. During his life he also served as a Palisades Interstate Park ranger, Boy Scout leader, and was a Hackensack Riverkeeper trustee. The scholarship that bears his name is fitting tribute to a life lived in the service of others. 

“One of the many things I learned from Ron during the all-too-short time he was with us was the value of education and of never letting a teachable moment pass,” said Capt. Sheehan. “That’s something all of us should understand because time is the best investment you can make in the life of a young person.”




Just Found Out about free listings with Green Resources New Jersey

January 1, 2012

Just found out that Green Resources New Jersey is compiling a Green directory and offering free listings in its publication through the month of January.

A listing includes your name and logo, address and phone number; your mission statement or purpose, and a brief description of your offerings.

A few of their clients include: Martindale’s Natural Market, Springfield, PA; Green Hospitality, Failte, Ireland; Historical Society of Princeton, NJ; and Fernbrook Farms, Chesterfield, NJ.

To learn how to enter your company or organization, visit the Green Resources New Jersey website.