Spotlight on the Class of 2020: Marie Febrillet – Her Ivy Dream Came True
Marie Febrillet has long cherished a special academic goal. “My dream is to attend an Ivy League university,” she said, shortly after a visit to Princeton.
That dream has come true. Marie receives her Associate’s Degree in Media and Communications with high honors in the Class of 2020, and she will transfer into a bachelor’s degree program at Columbia University, her first-choice university. One of the most distinguished graduates in the Class of 2020, Marie is the first PCCC student to receive the prestigious Jack Kent Cooke Transfer Scholarship, awarded this year to only 50 community college students from across the country. This award provides up to $120,000 toward her bachelor’s degree studies.
An avid member of Phi Theta Kappa (PTK), the international honor society for two-year colleges, Marie is also one of two PCCC students selected for PTK’s 2020 All-State New Jersey Academic Team.
She is also the recipient of several additional scholarship awards. As a New Century Transfer Scholar, TEK Production Transfer Scholar, and Ellucian Pathways Scholar, Marie will receive an additional $8000 in scholarship funding.
A leader as well as a scholar, Marie served from 2019-2020 as president of PTK’s Middle States Region which represents 80 chapters of PTK in four states and Washington, D.C. She is only the second PCCC student to be elected to such a high position in the organization.
Her outstanding success story at PCCC is all the more impressive in that Marie did not,initially intend to go to college. She came to the U.S. by herself, from the Dominican Republic, after graduating high school there, lived here on her own, and worked a full-time job.
“I enrolled at PCCC in Fall 2017 to challenge myself and to try to make new friends,” said Marie. She achieved both goals at levels far beyond what she ever imagined, even while continuing to work full time.
The scholar credits much of her success to being a member of PTK. Marie joined Alpha Eta Chi, the PCCC chapter of the honor society, in spring 2018, and marks that as a turning point in both her college career and personal life.
“When I joined PTK, I automatically connected with a group of strong friends who became like family,” said Marie. “We all strive to be the best we can be, but we also support and encourage each other.”
She expresses special regard for Professor Jennifer Gasparino, the faculty advisor to Alpha Eta Chi. “I really want to say how much I appreciate Professor Gasparino for pushing us to succeed and inspiring us to do what we didn’t think we could do,” said Marie.
When Marie became regional president of PTK, she had these words which have become her personal philosophy: “For me to be elected means that being limitless can get to be a reality; that as long as I keep striving for my goals, everything is possible.”
Written by Linda Telesco