rate with many of those same people today on
various research projects."
Winning a scholarship can be a turn
ing point early in the career of some stu-
dents, or plant seeds for a career change that
"I won a student essay contest scholarship
when I was in graduate school at Penn State,"
says Chase Rogan, a former assistant super
intendent who is now the GCSAA feld staff
representative in the Mid-Atlantic Region. "It
really helped me become a better writer. At
the time, most of the writing I had done was
academic. That essay contest really helped my
writing skills, which I use in my career now
to communicate with colleagues and super
visors, and on blogs and regional updates. I
enjoy writing those pieces because there's
more energy and I fnd them motivational."
The scholarships funded by the EIFG do
much more for the student recipients than
provide fnancial assistance.
"That scholarship helped give me the con
fdence to boost my writing abilities," Rogan
says. "All of us feld staff representatives write
regional roundups to summarize what we've
done and what's happening in our region.
Those are compiled and passed right up to the
CEO and the board of directors."
The scholarships also can serve as a third-
party validation from a national association
that can be a real shot in the arm for an up-
"The award also gave me confdence in
the turfgrass community," Merewitz says. "It
showed me that they truly acknowledge and
provide great support to those that work very
Chase Rogan, a winner of a GCSAA Student
Essay Contest scholarship and current Mid-Atlantic
regional representative for the association, chats with Paul
Grove, CGCS at the CC of Meadville (Pa.). Photo by Julie
The Toro Co.'s vice president of commercial sales, Darren Redetzke (far left), and managing director
Center for Technology, Dana Lonn (center back) are shown with the 2014 Watson Scholarship Program winners
(from left): Lisa Beirn; Matt Elmore, Ph.D.; and Paul Giordano, Ph.D. Photo by Roger Billings