Akron, NY--- Jr. of Lyndhurst, New Jersey has been selected by the members of the Upstate New York Chapter of the United States Harness Writers Association to receive the 2014 Dewey Degree Scholarship.
McDermott, a graduate of the Bergen County Academies, is the son of John and Nancy McDermott and will be starting his second year of college at the University of Florida (Gainesville) where he is studying business administration and law.
In high school, McDermott was on the high honor roll four consecutive years and his excellence in learning continued in his first year of college where he was a member of the Dean's list for both semesters with a 3.96 GPA.
Over the summer, McDermott spent most of his time working in his father's stable just like he has for most of his life as he explained there is no place he would rather be. And he looks to carry his passion for the sport into his professional life and will try to better the industry for both the people involved as well as the horses.
McDermott explained "I want to help create a new business model for the industry to make it more successful, but I also feel it should include the welfare of the horses. I hope to someday play a role in guaranteeing a percentage of all purse money each animal makes during their racing career goes towards a general Standardbred retirement fund that ensures they all have a place to go when they can no longer race. Owners and trainers already take home a small amount of the purses so it only seems fair that the horses get a small percentage for themselves."
The Upstate New York Chapter is proud to present the $1,500 check to this future harness racing industry leader on behalf of Jeff Gural andwho generously fund the scholarship that bears the name of Schnittker's Hambletonian champion trotter, .
By Tim Bojarski, president, Upstate New York USHWA