Neighborhood students get full ride to Vaughn College in East Elmhurst as part of LaGuardia redevelopment project


Six high school seniors from East Elmhurst and Corona were awarded four-year full-tuition scholarships to Vaughn College of Aeronautics and Technology, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced last week.

The $1.3 million scholarship program is part of the Cuomo administration’s continuing effort to provide opportunities for local communities to share in the economic benefits of the massive $8 billion LaGuardia Airport redevelopment project.

“A critical part of delivering a new world class LaGuardia Airport is ensuring the local community is included every step of the way,” Cuomo said. “I want to congratulate the winners of the LaGuardia opportunity scholarships and look forward to these future leaders helping to build a modern, state-of-the-art LaGuardia that will fundamentally transform New York for generations to come.”

The initiative provides local students an education in the aviation field, with the promise of a full-time position in aviation at the Port Authority upon graduation. Recipients will also be offered paid internships at Port Authority airports during the summers of their enrollments at Vaugh.

“Vaughn College is proud to partner with the Port Authority to offer the students of Queens an incredible opportunity to join this in-demand industry,” Vaughn College President Dr. Sharon DeVivo said. “Graduates of our institution have the greatest likelihood of moving to the top in income out of every other college in the country, and coupled with a debt-free education and employment possibilities in Queens, these students have an almost guaranteed successful future ahead of them.”

The scholarship announcement coincided with the opening of the new Council for Airport Opportunity LaGuardia Career Center located in a building operated by Elmcor, the Corona-based social services agency. CAO is a nonprofit organization that provides airport=related recruitment and job placement services to minorities and disadvantaged residents in Queens. The center is located at 107-20 Northern Boulevard in Corona.

“For the $8 billion overhaul of LaGuardia Airport to be successful, we must dedicate ourselves to ensuring that new employment and contract opportunities are filled by Queens residents, boosting both the efficiency of the airport and the economy of the surrounding neighborhood,” Queens Borough President Melinda Katz said. “Today’s opening of the Council for Airport Opportunity LaGuardia Career Center at Elmcor helps advance that incredibly vital mission. Fostering the development of the borough’s future leaders in aviation is also a crucial step toward operating state-of-the-art facilities like new LaGuardia Airport, and we congratulate the six dedicated Queens student scholarship winners who will no doubt flourish at Vaughn College of Aeronautics and Technology.”