HR Professional Funds Chapter's Certification Scholarship

By By Rena Gorlin, J.D. Jul 12, 2016
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​Andy Thiede, SHRM-SCP, presents the HR Certification Scholarship Award to Turkessa Antrum.

The Human Resource Association of Central Connecticut (HRACC) has established a $500 scholarship, funded by a local HR leader, to assist a chapter member in obtaining HR certification. 

Andy Thiede, SHRM-SCP, an HR consultant at KardasLarson LLC and HRACC's director of chapter operations, is funding the scholarship. Thiede set up the scholarship following a period of reflection on her decades-long HR career. She cited her memberships in HRACC and SHRM as the most important influences on her ability to reach her career goals.

Chartered in 1980, HRACC is an affiliate of SHRM that serves the greater Hartford area. Thiede joined the organizations in 1993, and she recalled how they provided her with opportunities that "allowed me to learn, grow, expand my network, meet great people, and most importantly, give me the tools I needed for HR success."

Among Thiede's many accomplishments are earning associate's and bachelor's degrees as an adult learner and obtaining her SHRM-SCP designation. "In the spirit of giving back, I made a personal decision to help another HRACC member offset the cost of achieving certification."

A board of advisors helped Thiede create eligibility criteria for the award, as well as application and review processes. While the Andy Thiede $500 HR Certification Scholarship bears the name of its benefactor, she chose not to be involved in selecting the recipients: "I would likely know the applicants," Thiede explained.

The award's first recipient is Turkessa Antrum, vice president of HR at Community Health Resources in Windsor, Conn., who was presented with the grant in May 2016. Antrum has master's degrees in HR management and business administration, volunteers with the Connecticut SHRM State Council as its membership director, and has been in the HR field for more than 20 years. "She and I have similar paths," Thiede noted at the presentation ceremony. "The only thing missing is HR certification, and we're going to help get her there."

Rena Gorlin, J.D., is an independent writer and editor in Washington, D.C.

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