Meet Our New Scholarship Students

Connie Kindsvater

We have four 2021-22 press club scholarship students.

Reese Holiday graduated from Fort Myers HS in 2019, has a 4.5 GPA, and will be a junior at University of Central Florida. He is majoring in Journalism and minoring in Sports Business Management. He expects to graduate in May 2023. Reese has been interning as a writer at the Santiva Chronicle this year and hopes to intern next year at The Orlando Sentinel. Press club board member George Lehner will be Reese’s mentor.

Madeline “Maddie” Laufer will graduate from Naples HS on May 28th and has a 4.37 overall GPA. She will attend Florida State University, majoring in Media/Communication Studies/Journalism. She has written articles for her school newspaper and the Naples Illustrated magazine, website and newsletter, assisting the editor-in-chief with photography and public outreach. She would like to work as a journalist after graduating from college, and then become an editor. Maddie is also interested in politics. She likes that Tallahassee is the capital of Florida, and she hopes to get involved in some legislative sessions, possibly doing some writing. Press club co-founder and board member Rhona Saunders will be Maddie’s mentor.

(clockwise) Reese Holiday, Madeline Laufer, Samantha Roesler, Avalon Gordy

Samantha Roesler graduated from St. John Neumann Catholic HS in Naples in 2017. She has a 3.7 overall GPA and will be a senior at Florida Gulf Coast University this year, graduating in 2022. She is majoring in both Journalism and Legal Studies. Samantha will be the Executive Editor of Eagle Media for the 2021-22 school year, after serving as the Eagle News Opinion Editor and Editor. And, she interned with Gulfshore Life from December-April. In February 2021 she started editing the press club’s Roundtable episodes, working with Bob Orr and Mark Young. She wants a career in a news-oriented atmosphere, but would like to also have a broadcast-focused internship for the experience. Samantha’s mentor will be press club member Glenn Miller. 

Avalon Gordy will again be our FGCU Endowed Press Club Journalism Scholarship student. She will be a junior at FGCU. Rachel Pierce, Avalon’s mentor, helped her get a job at Waterman Broadcasting as a production assistant. She currently works for both NBC-2 and ABC-7, running the teleprompter, operating cameras and doing floor-directing. She intends to intern as both a field reporter and a producer while attending FGCU as a full-time student this summer. Avalon’s dream job is to be a reporter. 

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