Thursday, September 6, 2012
On a recent afternoon, Cynthia Miller, Program Support Assistant with Telehealth (Mental Health), got a phone call. To her surprise, it was the Director of VA New York Harbor Healthcare System, Martina Parauda, with some exciting news.
“It felt good (to win and good to hear it) coming from the director,” said Ms. Miller, a full time online student at The University of Phoenix. “I was tongue tied when she told me. I don’t even know what I said.”
After she managed to get out a “thank you,” Ms. Miller, who lives in Brooklyn, was all smiles. The scholarship, which is worth $1000, will help with her tuition. She is a full time student studying for an Associate’s Degree in Healthcare Administration, with a concentration in Medical Records.
“It’s hard. It’s so much work,” admitted Ms. Miller, who, since March 2010, participates in four classes a week, but spends many hours on her studies, since she began the program last year.
A VA employee since 2007, Ms. Miller’s goal is to eventually secure a “more challenging” position at VA. “I like working here,” she said. “Patients are good to deal with. It is refreshing to see and talk with them.” Of Telehealth, she noted, “It’s growing so fast.”
The Federal Executive Board awarded six FEEA scholarships. Two were awarded to New York Harbor- one to Ms. Miller and another to Charles M. Sanky, son of Charles Sanky, Staff Assistant to the Director, who has worked at VA for 30 years.
The younger Sanky will be attending Columbia in the fall to study pre-med.
Salutatorian for his high school, he volunteered in the Adult Day Health Care program at St. Albans last summer and that he coordinated and performed in a musical concert for the Veterans in ADHC and the C2 residents.
There were over 130 candidates for the scholarships. The selection committee was comprised of Mary Breen, U.S. Attorney’s Office-EDNY; Diane Crean, Federal Aviation Administration; Daniel Mackey, DHS-Immigration and Customs Enforcement; Renee Miscione, General Services Administration; Joy Mitchell, U.S. Department of Labor; Carol Mollach, Social Security Administration; Kerrin Rooney, Internal Revenue Service and Cynthia Gable, FEB.
Since 1986 the FEEA has awarded over $9.5M in scholarships. It is supported through donations received from the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC). For more information on the Scholarship and Emergency Assistance Fund, go to feea