2018 USA Roller Sports Grants and Scholarships

Dec. 12, 2017, 5:41 p.m. (ET)

Please take a moment to read the following letter from Joy Mason, US Foundation for Amateur Roller Skating Grant Recipient.  See the available opportunities at the links below.

November 28, 2017

Dear USA Roller Sports Scholarship Committee,

I am writing to express my sincere and utter thanks for being awarded your $2,000 scholarship. Roller skating has always played such a large part in my life ever since the age of five. Skating has molded me into the person I am today, and for that, I will be forever thankful. Twelve years ago, when my parents and I stopped into the local roller rink, I never knew that I was in for such a ride.

I grew up in roller skating. I triumphed, I failed, I flourished. I learned some hard and valuable life lessons. I made friends, I have cried, and I have laughed a lot. I learned the value of determination, mental tenacity, and self-motivation. These, and a plethora of others, will stick with me for the rest of my life, especially as I pursue a career and my lifelong dream of becoming a cardiothoracic surgeon.

I often find it hard to put into words how much skating has affected me. There have definitely been some rough days, but these are the moments that shape a person most. My coach, Lou Pannunzio, often said that a skater is not defined by their championship medals, but how they respond to being left off of the podium. This never give up attitude will greatly help me when I go to college and beyond.

Without realizing it, I invested my life in a sport with lifelong benefits. I know that skating will always be there for me, and I take great comfort in that, for there is no better feeling than lacing up my skates and rolling around a hardwood floor. In fact, it is impossible for me to remember a time when I could not skate.

Once again, thank you so much for recognizing the effort that I have given to roller skating. It seems like the years flew by as I progressed from Primary A Girls all the way up to World Class Women’s Figures. I will always be proud to say that I was a competitive artistic World Class roller skater. Thank you so much for helping to enrich my life and for providing a community for me to belong to for so many years. Most of all, thank you for supporting me in my life after skating.


Joy Mason