Bird Watching

Bergen Community College: Bergen student chosen from 3,700 for scholarship

May 12, 2021

“Jade is a caring and passionate researcher as well as a valued member of PTK,” said Kelly Keane, Ph.D., and Lisa Mayer, Esq., In a co-signed statement, faculty advisers at Bergen PTK. “She is the Service Director on the PTK Board of Directors and has been an integral part of the award-winning Honors in Actions project. We are so proud that she won this prestigious scholarship.

Tollis plans to attend Rutgers University to study the ecology, evolution and management of natural resources to work in wildlife conservation after graduating with his associate degree in August. She aspires to be a researcher, educator, science communicator, community organizer and policy writer.

“I want to dedicate my life to defending New Jersey’s wildlife and helping my neighbors better connect to the natural world,” she said.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Tollis remained an active part of Bergen student life, as director of service for PTK and president and founder of the Bergen Outdoors Club, the college club dedicated to promoting education, stewardship and equity of nature. Tollis has also created a range of virtual student life programs covering topics such as birding, gardening for pollinators, and winter hiking. In addition, she volunteers as an educational educator at the Turtle Back Zoo, a citizen researcher with Save Coastal Wildlife, a hatchery intern with the Terrapin Nesting Project, and trail maintenance manager with the New York New Jersey Trail Conference.

“I am extremely honored to be recognized for this honor,” Tollis said. “I plan to join Phi Theta Kappa’s Alpha Epsilon Phi Chapter as one of the best decisions I have ever made. Being part of such an inspiring group of college students and leaders continually inspires me to work harder and to go higher. “

Based in Paramus, Bergen Community College (, a two-year coeducational public college, welcomes more than 13,000 students at institutions in Paramus, the Philip Ciarco Jr. Learning Center in Hackensack and Bergen Community College in Meadowlands in Lyndhurst. The College offers associate degree, certificate and continuing education programs in a variety of fields. More students graduate from Bergen than from any other community college in the state.

This press release was prepared by Bergen Community College. The opinions expressed here are those of the author.