Hello my name is Rosalia Abitino, I am a 19-year old student entering my Sophomore year at St John’s University, the Staten Island campus. My major in St John's University is Sports management. I chose this major because it allows me to help others with their rehabilitation, whether it is a child that fell, or athlete that has been seriously injured. My goal is to push them to get back to being active in their life. My educational goals are to receive my doctrine degree to become a physical therapist. My dream is to open up my own practice trying to help others. My inspiration was my father when he became disabled.
My father worked for the New York Daily News. One day he was loading his truck with newspapers getting ready to do a route and as he attempted to close the back gate of the truck, the wheels from the life gate jammed and his arm and back jerked back with the wheels getting stuck. He felt a pain right away. Once he went to the doctors to get a check-up, they told him he had torn his arm and pulled his back. My father had to endure a lot of physical therapy to try to get some activity back in his arm. I was there for my dad when he needed me to help him do therapy. He taught me all the treatments he needed to do to help him heal. He was my inspiration to help others. Watching my dad struggle in his daily life was tough, especially when he was diagnosed with Failed Back Syndrome. It was very difficult for us to endure that information we knew that my father would never be the same. Although he tried so many things to help him, nothing worked for him. He went through the pain of four surgeries and still nothing changed.I want to thank New Jersey Self Insurers Association and KNCJ for choosing me to be a recipient of this scholarship. Receiving this scholarship means that the pressure that my family has had can be relieved in some way. This disability has brought so much burden on my family, with my dad being out of work, my mom had to get a job so that she can support our family. Having this scholarship would help so much with my family's financial hardship. It will lower my college tuition bill. Thank you very much for this opportunity.