HACKENSACK, N.J. -- A 15-year-old Hackensack High School sophomore who plans to someday became a forensics detective received $500 in checks from PBA Local 9 and FOP Lodge 16 on Wednesday.
The donations will help defray some of the cost for Da'Monique Kelly to attend a special law enforcement program at George Mason University in Virginia this summer.
Da'Monique was chosen to represent HHS and the community at the special National Leadership Forum (NYLF): LAW & CSI, in association with Envision Career & Leadership Programs and the university.
"This will be a powerful experience, enabling Da'Monique to interact with respected professionals in various fields while building relationships with students who will be her future colleagues," said her mother, Andrea Kelly.
YOU CAN HELP: Following the police union donations, Da'Monique still needed to raise a little over $500 as of Wednesday to qualify for the program. A GoFundMe account has been established to help her realize her dream.
Da'Monique has maintained a 3.5 GPA -- and recently made Honor Roll for the sixth straight marking period, her mother said.
She's involved in girls basketball, as well as the Heros and Cool Kids mentorship program, and last year was graduated from the Hackensack Police Department's Junior Police Academy.
Da'Monique needed to raise a little over $1,500 more to qualify for the program after investing nearly $500 of her own money for the deposit.
(Tuition is $2095 and travel expenses are $200.)
"I am sure that she would be willing to take on little side jobs to raise the funds needed," Andrea Kelly said.
The police union donations mean a great deal, she said.
"I understand my responsibility as a parent to take financial responsibility for my daughter's educational endeavors," Kelly added, "but a campaign such as this allows these teens to see that people other than their parents believe in them and are willing to make a small investment in their future."