At the Dec. 4, Press Club of Southwest Florida luncheon meeting, Scholarship Chairman Phil Beuth presented a check for $5,000 to the FGCU Foundation for the NPC Endowed Scholarship to Judith M. Cassidy, Sr. Director, Florida Gulf Coast University Foundation. The total amount in that scholarship fund is now $25,000, and the chosen student recipient each academic year will receive a $1,000 Award to apply toward tuition. Cassidy thanked the Press Club of Southwest Florida and spoke about how much scholarships such as ours benefit student recipients.
The NPC Endowed FGCU Foundation Scholarship was established in October 2010, with a $10,000 donation from Press Club of Southwest Florida. In 2011 FGCU announced that the school would be adding a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism. Following that announcement, the NPC Endowed Scholarship recipient would be required to seek a Journalism/Media Studies degree in addition to being a full-time student, maintaining at least a 3.0 GPA and planning a career in the overall journalism/media fields. Collier County students are given preference, but it’s not a requirement. Each spring, applications of the candidates meeting the NPC Endowed Scholarship requirements are given to the NPC Scholarship Committee, which then chooses a recipient of the annual scholarship award.
In April 2013 the Press Club of Southwest Florida added $5,000 to the NPC Endowed Scholarship, and in March 2014 another $5,000 contribution was made in memory of Arthur Hecht, who first proposed the idea of the NPC Endowed Scholarship at FGCU. The total amount in the NPC Endowed Scholarship Fund was $20,000.
The December 2014 contribution of $5,000 results in a fully endowed $25,000 NPC Scholarship, which will continue in perpetuity. The $1,000 Award given annually to the student recipient matches the $1,000 annual Press Club of Southwest Florida Scholarship Awards given to Collier County high school graduates. These scholarships are managed through the 501(c) 3 Champions for Learning/Education Foundation of Collier County.
Former recipients of the NPC Endowed FGCU Foundation Scholarship Awards are: 2010-11 Myrlande Charelus (Golden Gate HS-2008/FGCU grad 2012), 2011-12 Mary Castro (Immokalee HS-2010/FGCU grad 2014), 2012-13 and 2013-14 Andrew Friedgen (FGCU grad 2014), and 2014-15 Krista Sinclair, a junior majoring in Journalism at FGCU.
Sue McManus, president, and Drew Attansio, vice-president/finance, of Champions for Learning plan to attend the NPC May 2015 luncheon meeting to speak about the annual, renewable Terrence J. Miller NPC Scholarships the NPC Scholarship Committee awards each year to Collier County high school graduates. The requirements are that the student be seeking a degree in journalism/media field of studies, be a full-time student, maintain at least a 3.0 GPA and plan to seek a career in the overall journalism/media fields.
Currently the Press Club of Southwest Florida has six Terrence J. Miller NPC Scholarship Students–Sarah Grace Davenport (Golden Gate HS-2014/Journalism major at FGCU), Melissa Gomez (Lely HS-2014/Journalism major at U of FL), Oscar Santiago (Golden Gate HS-2011/Journalism major at FGCU), Lauren Schoepfer (Barron Collier HS-2012/Emerging Media major at UCF), Kyle Shatto (Naples HS-2013/Journalism & Sports Management Communication double-major at FSC), and John Marshall Wix III (Golden Gate HS-2011/Journalism major at FGCU).
Press Club of Southwest Florida mentors for our scholarship students are: Phil Beuth (Oscar), Carole Greene (Melissa), Connie Kindsvater (Krista and Kyle), Jeff Margolis (John), Rhona Saunders (Lauren) and Karla Wheeler (Sarah Jane).