Three graduating high school seniors were recognized with scholarships on Tuesday.
The Cape Coral Police Department hosted the 19th Annual “Do The Right Thing” Scholarship Luncheon at Personal Touch Banquet and Catering. Cape residents Anna Katherina Dostie, Juliana V. Pena Lopez and Alana Pound were each awarded a $1,000 scholarship for a college education.
Police Chief David Newlan said the program honors student accomplishments.
“That’s our future generations, that’s our future,” he said of the three teens.
“I’m happy for them – to see what they’ve accomplished,” Newlan said.
Nick Jones, vice president of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 33 – a longtime sponsor of the scholarships – explained that the recipients are previous Do The Right Thing program winners.
“The award itself, the whole program, has to do with character,” he said.
Pena Lopez, 18, a senior at Cape Coral High School, plans to major in biology, with a pre-med track, at the University of Florida. She wants to be a behavioral and developmental pediatrician.
“I’ve always sympathized with special needs individuals,” she said.
Pena Lopez was recognized by the Do The Right Thing program for starting the Seahawk Sidekicks at her school. It is a social inclusion club that partners up special needs and general eduction students.
She said the group of about a dozen get together weekly for activities on and off campus.
Pena Lopez got the idea for the club from one a similar one at another local school.
“It was a great experience,” she said.
Pena Lopez said she was extremely honored to be picked for the scholarship. Having secured about eight scholarships so far, she explained that this one looks at academics and community involvement.
“It was, ‘How did I make a difference?'” she said.
Pena Lopez is a member of the National Honor Society, the varsity volleyball team and the IB Ambassador Program, as well as a leader of a church youth group, according to the program.
Pound, 18, a senior at North Fort Myers High School, intends to major in public relations at Florida State University. She explained that she has always enjoyed the theater, as well as writing.
“I’ve always been interested in public speaking,” Pound said.
In 2008, she was honored by the Do The Right Thing program for taking part in a fundraiser for a fellow student who had been diagnosed with cancer. She performed in the play, “The Wizard of Oz.”
Asked about being awarded the scholarship, Pound said she was shocked to get it.
“This was the first one that I’ve received, so I was very excited,” she said.
Pound added that she was honored to be selected.
“It means a lot to be appreciated by the community,” she said.
Pound is a member and the treasurer of the National Honor Society and is also a member of the Key Club. She earned an AICE Diploma and directed Shakespeare’s “Romeo & Juliet” at North High.
Dostie, 17, a senior at Cape Coral High School, plans to major in pharmacy at the University of Florida. Accepted into the university’s Honors Program, she is aiming for a doctorate of pharmacy.
Dostie was unable to attend the luncheon on Tuesday, but her mother was present.
“We’re very proud of Anna,” Mary Dostie said.
She noted that her daughter has received additional scholarships.
“We’re very happy and very grateful with the scholarships she’s won,” Mary Dostie said.
She added that it takes a lot of stress and anxiety off of the students’ shoulders.
Dostie is a member of the varsity swim team and a Youth of Faith Leadership team member, as well as the president of the IB Ambassador Program and the vice president of National Honor Society.
She was also head of promotion for the IB Ambassador Program.