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Students recognized with ‘Do The Right Thing’ scholarships

By Staff | Apr 19, 2016

For years, these students have done the right things at home and in the classroom.

Monday, at Rumrunners, three upcoming graduates were honored with scholarships at the 18th annual Cape Coral Police Department “Do The Right Thing” scholarship luncheon.

Sara Bryce, a senior at Oasis High School, and Megan Galbreath and Shelby Farmer, both of Cape Coral High School, were selected for their stellar work in the classroom and the community,. They were chosen from among 25 applicants.

Bryce and Galbreath received $1,000 awards; Farmer received $750.

Joy Nyack, Community Outreach Projects coordinator for the CCPD, said beside financial aid, applicants had to carry at least a 2.5 grade point average or better, write a 300-word essay of how being a positive role model has affected those around them, get two letters of recommendation and include a resume showing involvement in the community and work history.

The recipients certainly had the skills, and impressive parents to go along with them. One was the daughter of educators, another worked for Lee County Public Safety.

Bryce, who intends to major in Hospitality at the University of Central Florida, is a three-year member of the National Honor Society and Spanish Honor Society and a four-year member of the school’s drama program.

Bryce said her essay about working with children through Bible schools put her over the top, as it spoke of serving others.

“I’m really honored to receive this award. I was surprised when I learned I won the award in the middle of school. I read it in an e-mail and was really happy,” Bryce said.

Nelson Stephenson, superintendent of Cape Coral Charter Schools, said Bryce is a student to look up to and represents the best the system has to offer.

“This is an example of someone who has gone above and beyond of what they should be, so we’re really proud. She represents our charter system,” Stephenson said. “We have made this a real priority as far as being present at these events.”

Shelby Farmer plans to attend the University of Florida to major in animal science. She was a four-year member of the school’s swim team and of the National Honor Society.

Farmer wrote about her experience as a cheer coach for the McGregor Baptist Church team, which she took over after the other head coach had a health crisis despite never having done cheer herself. The team won a national championship.

“We wanted to show that these underprivileged girls we able to become national champions and come on top,” Farmer said. “My family has been one of my inspirations. My mom and my sister were a part of this cheer team, and my teachers and my peers have helped me better myself.”

Her father, Rob, is the director of the Department of Public Safety for Lee County.

Galbreath, who plans to attend Harvard and major in Molecular and Cellular Biology, was attending orientation in Boston and was unable to attend. She was the only scholarship winner to have been a “Do The Right Thing” winner and was a state champion in diving last season, despite having only done it for two years.

There to accept the award on her behalf were her parents, Michael, principal at Trafalgar Middle School, and Amy, also a teacher.

“We are very proud. She has worked very hard through her four years in high school and it’s great to see her hard work pay off,” Amy said. “She represents when you work hard and persevere, good things will come to you. She’s had to overcome things like everyone, else, but she strives to do her best and be successful.”

Among those in attendance were Cape Coral City Manager John Szerlag, council members Marilyn Stout and Jessica Cosden, Police Chief Bart Connelly, Fire Chief Donald Cochran and Sgt. Bennett Walker, president of the Fraternal Order of Police.

Connelly said programs such as this is a great way for kids to be rewarded for good deeds they hope will push them forward throughout their lives, with hopes their services will return to help Cape Coral.

“To be able to give these scholarships to these kids who do so well, it’s a good thing for us to be able to be here for that,” Connelly said. “Do The Right Thing is a great way for us to work with the youth of the community and to reward them for their work in the community.”