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Marriott: Preferred Partner

Oakwood Worldwide Awards $10,000 to Promote Higher Learning

Date: 7/24/2012

Media Contact:

Sharron Saunders
Global Communications at Oakwood Worldwide


Company Grants College Scholarships to Six Children of Associates

LOS ANGELES, July 24, 2012 – Hard work and a passion for learning earned six young people scholarships and bursary awards through the Howard F. Ruby Scholarship Program from Oakwood Worldwide, the global leader in corporate housing and serviced apartments. The program, named after the company founder, is in its third year and is exclusively available to children of Oakwood's 2,500 associates. This year's recipients earned scholarships for their exceptional academic achievements and community service. They are:

  • Jessica Rubio from Los Angeles, who was awarded a $5,000 scholarship;
  • Margaret Elizabeth Morrison from Stafford, Va., who earned a $2,500 scholarship; and
  • Tram "Tina" Tran from Renton, Wash., who received a $1,000 scholarship.

Rubio has faced a few challenges in her quest for higher learning, including some financial hardships, but her enthusiasm and perseverance have helped her succeed.  Inspired by her parents, immigrants from El Salvador who escaped extreme poverty and violence, Rubio has been very involved in helping her community. She is responsible for boosting recycling efforts at the local community college, where she is pursuing her associate degree.

As a student at Longwood University in Farmville, Va., Morrison is pursuing a master’s degree in business management.  Her passion for business started in high school as a member and secretary of the Future Business Leaders of America and an officer of the National Business Honor Society.  She also continues her passion for volunteering with activities including planning the first R-WORD Campaign at Longwood University to end the use of the word “retarded.”

Tran has met her goal to be the first in her family to graduate college, helping to set an example for low-income families and first-generation students.  A devoted reader and student, Tran has enjoyed serving as managing editor of her high school news magazine and mentoring freshmen. Tran’s plans include attending the University of Washington with a double major in early childhood/family studies and sociology and eventually joining the Peace Corps.

Award recipients were recognized for academic achievement and community involvement through volunteer work in the areas of health and human services, education, arts and culture, civic life, community service and environmental preservation.  Each scholarship can be awarded annually for up to four years of college education, based on annual reviews by the Howard F. Ruby Scholarship Program Committee.

Because of the number of impressive applications received, the scholarship committee also selected three applicants who will receive one-time bursary awards of $500 each for the Fall 2012 school year: Kelsey Glen, from Kirkland, Wash.; Austin Gonzalez, from Canyon Country, Calif.; and Erika Aguirre, from Canoga Park, Calif.

“I’m inspired by the enthusiasm and achievements of these incredible young people,” said Howard Ruby, Oakwood founder, chairman and chief operating officer.  “Their hard work in school and in their communities really demonstrates their dedication to realizing their academic dreams and hopes for a better world.  Our scholarship program focuses on supporting future business leaders and humanitarians – and continuing our commitment to higher learning in our Oakwood family.  My experience as a business owner for more than 50 years has driven home the importance of education and fostering leadership skills and the entrepreneurial spirit in others, especially young people.”

Oakwood has a long history of investing in its employees, offering learning and growth experiences with educational reimbursement and internal and external training seminars.  In addition, Oakwood University (OU), the company’s award-winning in-house training and development group, has been honored by Training Magazine, which has named Oakwood as one of the Top 125 Training Companies for six consecutive years.

The Howard F. Ruby Scholarship Program selection committee includes several members of Oakwood’s executive committee including: Marina Lubinsky, senior vice president and chief information officer; Ric Villarreal, president; Jill Chapman, senior vice president, sales and marketing; and Ana Castellanos, vice president, human resources.

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About Oakwood Worldwide

Oakwood Worldwide®, based in Los Angeles, Calif., is the leading provider of corporate housing and serviced apartment solutions through its two well-known brands, Oakwood® and ExecuStay®.  Both brands provide move-in-ready furnished housing designed to meet the needs of business travelers on long- and short-term assignments. Oakwood has access to the largest selection of housing options and a presence in all 50 United States and more than 55 countries. ExecuStay is the preferred corporate housing partner of Marriott® International and is the only corporate housing brand where guests can earn Marriott Rewards® points for stays at any ExecuStay location in the U.S.

For more information, please visit www.oakwood.com and www.execustay.com