Update: Current & Former NPC Scholarship Students

Camilla Cal – (UCF Freshman, Naples HS, Carole Greene, mentor)
Everything is going really well at UCF! I feel very much at home here, and I’ve made a lot of good friends that have made the transitioning process easier. Over the summer, I took a philosophy class that really changed the way I view the world, and made me consider possibly minoring in it. I’m currently taking a News Reporting class, which has quickly become my favorite. This week we learned how to cover stories at events, and we wrote articles about the Hispanic Heritage parade that occurred this past week and that may get published on the student media website! I’ve realized that college is so important because I’m actually excited to attend classes and learn about things in a much deeper way. I’m looking forward to finishing this semester strong!  I was really worried about starting college again, since I had to take the year off, but I feel confident that I made the right decision coming to UCF.  Go Knights!

Melissa Gomez – (UF graduate 2018, Carole Greene, Mentor)
“Life seems to always be busy. I’m currently living in Brooklyn and I’m still at The New York Times; October 27 will be my last day. Then I’ll be in Naples for a day and a half before flying to Mexico with my mother for two weeks. Hope all is well with the Press Club of Southwest Florida and members.”

Tamica Jean-Charles – (FIU-Miami Junior, Naples HS, Oscar Santiago, mentor)
    At the beginning of this month, I attended the National Lesbian and Gay Journalist Association convention in Palm Springs, CA. I was part of the CONNECT Student Journalism Project, a subset within the convention where ten students from around the country are chosen to do a story regarding the LGBTQA community and the location of the convention. I got to meet amazing journalists from publications from The New York Times to The Boston Globe, to USA Today and Politico. I contacted everyone I met, and hope to land an internship for the summer or next year.

I did a video-profile on Lisa Middleton, the first transgender city council person to be elected in non-judicial California. She is also a part of the first all LGBTQA city council. I followed Middleton and got to know about her journey with her identity, and learn more about her outlook for the city of Palm Springs. This was my first time doing a full video profile, and I plan on doing more in the future.

Back in Miami, I’m continuing my work as the entertainment director for Florida International University’s publication, PantherNOW. I’m still figuring the ins and outs of the job, and balancing my schoolwork with my part-time job, but I’m staying strong and persevering through everything as best I can.

Deanna Lampasona – (USF Freshman, Lely HS, Mary Ramshaw, Mentor)
Things are going extremely well at USF. I am currently taking classes all targeted and closely related to Mass Communications, which are all going great. I also acquired a paid internship at a global business law firm here in Tampa, and I love it. I’ve met some incredible people throughout my summer term, and I’ve made some even better memories with them. I’m currently busy most of the time, either in a classroom or at the firm, but I wouldn’t have it any other way right now; I’m happy where I am. I’m also considering tutoring students in writing when I have some free time.

Sebastian Languidey – (FAU Freshman, Naples HS, Connie Kindsvater, Mentor)
Things are going very well at Florida Atlantic. I’ve started classes for my major this semester. I’m also playing club tennis for the school and write for the University Press newspaper on campus. I’ve started a part-time job in telemarketing, selling newspaper subscriptions for the Miami Herald’s Spanish edition. The office is in Boca Raton, and I work five days/week, 25 hours/week. I’ve been going to football games and hanging out with new friends that I’ve made on campus. I really like this school; it has been the best decision to choose Florida Atlantic University!

Brianna Monroe – (UF Freshman, Marco Island Academy, Karla Wheeler, Mentor)
I want to share with you what I have been doing so far at UF. I attended a few journalism events where we all socialized and chatted about journalism clubs and organizations UF has to offer. I applied to a group called PopMedia TV and am happy to say that I got the position of Featured Writer! I will send you any work that I publish through them.

Ellie Rushing – (Rollins College Senior, Naples HS, Connie Kindsvater, Mentor)
I had a fabulous summer interning with the Sun-Sentinel as a features and business writer. I wrote over 50 stories, with 8 making to 1A. I’m so pleased with the time I spent in Fort Lauderdale and I learned a ton from the great reporters and editors there. Being in a newsroom when the Capital Gazette shooting happened, a sister paper of the Sentinel, was impactful, to say the least, as I was able to come together with the community to mourn the losses and raise money.

At school, I’m finally in my senior year! I’m the editor-in-chief of the school paper for the second year and we are slowly plugging away, improving each edition as time goes on. I am really proud of my staff for how far we’ve all come.

I have almost completed my majors, Communication Studies and Environmental Studies, and am currently applying for a Fulbright in Rwanda. The odds are low of actually getting it, but I would love to go back and start another newspaper club there and get to do some international writing. I am also applying for an internship with the Tampa Bay Times for this coming summer.

On another note, I was selected to be a U.N. Millennium Fellow, which is a prestigious fellowship to pursue U.N. Sustainable Development goals. I’m the co-lead Sustainability Coordinator of the Sustainability Program and tutor students in their writing for about six hours/week. I’m busy, but I like it.

I look forward to seeing NPC members at a luncheon in the future. Thank you again for all of your support!

Aiden Strawhun – (FGCU graduate 2018, Gina Edwards, Mentor)
I moved to Berkeley, California in August, and the J-School has been very welcoming. I was really lucky when it came to housing—I live just north of the J-School up in the hills. It’s very beautiful, quiet and serene. It’s just a bit nippy here for me, still.

I had an interview with Electronic Arts that went well—I’ll know more soon about that. In August I was on the Games Daily show with Greg Miller (a very famous games journalist turned influencer); I had bumped into him at an event in Austin and he invited me to be a guest on his show!

NPC to Match Scholarship Fund Donations

Have you made your donation to the Press Club of Southwest Florida Scholarship Fund?
Do so now so that your donation will be doubled!
The MATCHING FUNDS NPC Journalism Scholarship offer continues!

Your donation will be matched by a generous anonymous donor!

Since the Matching Funds offer began in June, Press Club of Southwest Florida members have donated $1,525 to the NPC Scholarship Fund! The anonymous donor, who is matching the donated funds, will donate up to $2,000 for the Press Club of Southwest Florida Journalism Scholarship Fund. Help us get to that total; we need only $475 but will happily accept more! No gift is too small—$5, $25, $50—it all adds up.

Please send your checks, made out to “Champions for Learning”
with “NPC Scholarship Fund” in the memo line, to:
Connie Kindsvater, NPC Scholarship Chairman,
1345 Remington Way #4202, Naples, FL 34110

You will receive a tax deduction letter from Champions for Learning (formerly the Education Foundation-Collier County), a 501 (c) 3 charitable organization which holds our NPC Scholarship Fund monies, thanking you for your donation to the NPC Scholarship Fund.

The Press Club of Southwest Florida is currently supporting 10 NPC Journalism Students at 8 colleges/universities: Rollins College (1 student), Florida Atlantic University (1 student), FGCU (1 student), Florida International University-Miami (1 student), University of Central Florida (1 student), University of Florida (3 students), University of South Florida (1 student), Wartburg College, Iowa (1 student).

Each student received a $1,000 NPC Journalism Scholarship for the 2018-19 academic year. Funds will be needed to support the students for the 2019-20 year, too, plus any new scholarship students who are chosen.


Your donation will help support the next generation of journalists.
That is part of the Mission Statement for the Press Club of Southwest Florida.
Your support is greatly valued and appreciated!

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