First Financial Foundation Names Michelle Cottrell of Manahawkin Winner of 2012 Erma Dorrer Literary Scholarship

Contact: Jessica Revoir
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WALL, N.J. (Wednesday, September 12, 2012) – The First Financial Federal Credit Union Foundation ( recently awarded a $750 scholarship to Michelle Cottrell of Manahawkin, who is currently attending the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey

Six winners were chosen overall to win this year’s Erma Dorrer Literary Scholarship.
This year, there were two scholarship topics.  Applicants choose to answer one of the following questions:

How have the recent financial events of 2011 (Wall Street Protest and Bank Transfer Day) affected your opinion of credit unions? What is your perspective in regard to First Financial Federal Credit Union?
Compare and contrast commercial banks to First Financial and the Credit Union movement.
Applicants submitted a written essay or video clip to answer the question of their choice, and either had to be a member of the credit union attending a 2 or 4 year college anywhere in the country, or a non-member attending a 2 or 4 year college within Monmouth or Ocean Counties to be considered for the scholarship.

Michelle wrote about the financial events of 2011, and in her essay stated, “What I respect about credit unions, First Financial in particular, is that this is a not-for-profit organization that is for the people. First Financial can be trusted because they are member owned and concerned with their service. When I came in for the first time confused about what type of account I should open, I was treated with respect and what is most important to me, honesty. Thanks to the recent events of Occupy Wall Street, I have learned a lot that I may never have known about banks and credit unions. It is important that we, as a community, work together to support ourselves and each other, and credit unions like First Financial can help us to accomplish that.”

“We are delighted to assist in furthering the educational aspirations of these worthy young men and women,” said First Financial President and CEO, Issa Stephan.  “Our credit union puts a high priority on education, after all – that’s how First Financial began 76 years ago, with a group of schoolteachers in Asbury Park.”

View this year’s scholarship winners on the First Financial Foundation web site.


About the First Financial Foundation:

Since 1994, First Financial has supported the Monmouth & Ocean communities with the Erma Dorrer Scholarship Program. Today, that program has been extended into the First Financial Foundation to assist charitable organizations of the Monmouth & Ocean County Communities.  The First Financial Federal Credit Union Foundation is a non-profit working to support a variety of community programs and organizations throughout Monmouth and Ocean Counties.  We direct 100% of your contributions to programs because all administrative expenses are paid for by First Financial Federal Credit Union.  To learn more, visit .

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