PHILIPSBURG – Through an intervention of sorts just two years ago by Member of Parliament (MP) Tamara Leonard, a concept was born to attempt to assist one student with a scholarship.
This led to a vision of trying to assist many more that suffered the same fate of that student. This vision eventually led to the establishment of the Education For Us All Foundation (E4UA), an organization whose initiative is to give St. Maarten-born students a chance to pursue and achieve their tertiary education.
The main focus of the organization are the students who tend to “fall through the cracks” of our educational system after completing high school. Each year, there are several students that fail to secure a scholarship due to various reasons. E4UA decided to take on an approach as supplementary body to the Department of Education in its mission to assist these students by issuing grants or scholarships. With the help of many generous sponsors, the organization managed to raise the necessary funds to start positively affecting the lives of young aspiring St. Maarteners.
“The fruits of our labor are the college graduates who have worked hard to maintain their grades while being supported by E4UA scholarships” stated Duncan van Heyningen, President of E4UA. “We are proud to announce that in 2017 we yielded our second college graduate, Neydia Romou, who achieved an Associate’s Degree from the University of St. Martin (USM). She follows in the footsteps of our first graduate Keidy Gregoria who graduated in 2016,” he continued.
Romou, who graduated on Saturday, June 24, via a Facebook post, thanked E4UA for their assistance, the management of STM Shipping for allowing her time off to complete her studies and her close friends and relatives for their continued support.
Education For Us All’s scholarship program would not be possible without the sponsors that financially backed the foundation without hesitation. This includes NAPA, Le Grande Marché, Caribbean Liquors & Tobacco, Ace Mega Center, Domino’s Pizza, Windward Islands Bank Ltd., All Waste In Place, Clean SXM, Prime Distributors, MJR Bailiff Marshall Services, Rotary Club of St. Maarten, UTS and St. Maarten Shipping & Stevedoring.
These sponsors have been on board with E4UA and during this past year have made it possible for 8 students to attend the USM, with one student receiving a financial grant to assist with attaining her Master’s degree in the Netherlands.
E4UA consists of Director Sharalee Lint-Beudeker, President van Heyningen, Treasurer Roxanne Howell, Secretary Keyla van Heyningen and Honorary Board Member Whitney Murray. Founder of the organization is MP Leonard.
They are currently accepting new applications, and young persons interested in applying for the E4UA scholarship program, can send an email to email@example.com for more information.