By: PRLog
National Drowning Prevention Alliance Presents Seven John Hamed Student Scholarship Awards
John Hamed Student Scholarship Awards Presented to Seven Aquatics Students At the 12th Annual NDPA Symposium, March 13-15 in Fort Lauderdale.

PR Log - Mar 26, 2013 - The National Drowning Prevention Alliance presented 7 awards to student majoring in aquatics during a luncheon ceremony on Friday March 15th at the 12th Annual National Drowning Prevention Symposium, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.  The NDPA Annual Drowning Prevention Symposium is the leading national conference devoted to drowning prevention and water safety. This educational event is designed to offer attendees the opportunity to network with advocates and experts in research, products, educational programming, outreach strategies, policy and code, international relations, and with families raising awareness of drowning prevention and water safety.  This year, the theme for the Symposium was “Reaching Out”.  The NDPA Awards ceremony was hosted by the USA Swimming Foundation, with Executive Director Debbie Hesse as the ceremony emcee.

Three years ago at the NDPA Drowning Prevention 2010 Symposium was held in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania.  John Hamed, at that time a student at Slippery Rock University studying aquatics and working with Professor Robert Ogoreuc at that event, wanted to attend the Symposium as a participant, but could not afford to do so.  Hearing John’s story, the NDPA decided to create the John Hamed Scholarship Award in order to assist other aspiring aquatics students in their career goals.  With this goal in mind, the NDPA decided to use the funds attained through the silent auction to provide scholarships for students who were interested in a career in aquatics to attend the NDPA Symposium in subsequent years.  

The revenue from silent auction at the 2010 Symposium enabled the NDPA to send one college student interested in aquatics as a possible career to the 2011 NDPA Symposium in Colorado Springs, Colorado. During the silent auction at the 2011 NDPA Symposium the NDPA was able to garner enough funding for scholarships to send two students to the NDPA 2012 Symposium in San Diego, California.  The silent auction in San Diego resulted in funding for even more scholarships enabling the NDPA to send five students to the Symposium this year, and created the first ever Internship with the NDPA for one student.  In addition, one more scholarship was donated from NDPA Board member Gerald M. Dworkin,  Consultant, Aquatics Safety & Water Rescue Lifesaving Resources, LLC, who donated his “spot” as a sponsor of the Symposium to another student.

The students selected to receive the John Hamed Student Scholarship Award were invited to submit applications with a bio and description stating the reasons why they should qualify for the scholarship the NDPA for review and selection by the Board Of Directors. The John Hamed Scholarship Award afforded students in the field of aquatics study the opportunity to attend the symposium and the winners each received a check for $750 at the symposium.  

Including the scholarship donated, the seven winning students are;

Ashley David, Hermitage, Pennsylvania
: Slippery Rock University Class of 2014; Major in Physical Activity, Minor in Aquatics
Lydia Farabaugh, Ebensburg, Pennsylvania: Slippery Rock University, Slippery Rock, PA Post-Baccalaureate: Health & Physical Education/Education Certification; Minor in Aquatics Aug 2009-Present; Numerous Aquatic Certifications, Lifeguard
Kory Klinger, Pittsburg, Pennsylvania: Major Health and Physical Education, Minor in Aquatics; Slippery Rock University; Lifeguard, Numerous Aquatic Certifications, Lifeguard Instructor, Class of 2013
William Koom, San Diego, California: Bachelor of Arts, Sociology; Bachelor of Arts, Spanish Language Studies, Point Loma Nazarene University Class of 2013; Seasonal Lifeguard; Manager of International Projects and Relations , International Surf Lifesaving Association
Gracelyn Rezmer, Appleton, Wisconsin: Freshman, Appleton, WI; Major TBD, Stand Up Paddling (SUP) swimming, and diving,, summer lifeguard.
Vincent Riddle, Lower Burrell, Pennsylvania: Slippery Rock University Class of 2014; Major: Health & Physical Education, Minor in Aquatics; Numerous Aquatic Certifications
Samuel Swanseger, Erie, Pennsylvania:  Senior Sport Management Undergraduate at Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania, Minor in Business Administration Class of 2013; Treasurer Swim Club; Polo Club; Lifeguard; Inaugural NDPA Intern; 12 credit Internship during final semester spent at NDPA Office in Fort Lauderdale, FL.  

For additional information on the NDPA John Hamed Student Scholarship Award please contact Kim Burgess, Executive Director of the NDPA at

The symposium is sponsored by; The Safer 3 Water Safety Foundation, The USA Swimming Foundation, The United States Swim School Association, D&D Technologies (, Clarion Safety Systems, The Independent Pool & Spa Service Association, The Consumer Products Safety Commission, The Lone Star Lifesavers, and ResQMe.  The NDPA Symposium highlights the best-of-the-best in drowning prevention educational programs, strategies, and products for individuals and organizations. Its purpose is to empower attendees so they can replicate successful events and educational activities in their own communities and improve public awareness.

About The National Drowning Prevention Alliance:

The National Drowning Prevention Alliance (NDPA) is a volunteer-driven, non-profit organization. The NDPA’s mission is to prevent drowning and aquatic injuries, by educating, leading, engaging, and supporting the public, its members, chapters, and partners. The NDPA is located at 1 Hall of Fame Drive, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33316 and online at

Contact:  Kim Burgess, Executive Director
National Drowning Prevention Alliance
PH:  954-804-4845

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