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Kiwanis Club announces scholarships for local students

By Staff | Jun 18, 2020

The Kiwanis Club of the Islands recently announced its Kiwanis Scholarship Awards Program recipients for the coming 2020-21 school year. This year, the club is awarding a total of $63,500 in scholarships to 35 deserving students – the most ever in the history of the program.

The multi-year scholarships were presented to: Daisy Arensman, Sam Arensman, Stephanie Crown, Jake Mann, Amber Schweitzer and Kelsi Snow. One-year awards were presented to: Maria Angelino, Alanya Aracri, Carson Brown, Calie Connor, Adrian Cooper, Deanna Marie Craig, Jennifer Crown, Suzanna DeCosta, Rusty Farst, Gabriele Gedvilaite, Hayley Halski, Sage Holaway, Alec Koonz, Amanda Kovacs, David Lowden, Emery Lowden, Skyler Lowden, Elizabeth Meardon, Savannah Nippa, Clay Robison, Brendan Speckman, Lauren Speckman, Samantha Strickland, Kylie M. Sutton, Caroline Tersoro, Daniel Trier, Alyssa Vetter, Kyle Walker and Noah Weigel.

Some special scholarships were made in honor of Kiwanis family members and donors. Amber Schweitzer received the Walter Dickinson II Memorial Award; Sam Arensman received the Nancy Bender Memorial Award; Daisy Arensman received the Joan Kearny Scholarship; and Hayley Halski, Adrian Cooper and Carson Brown received Phillip Starling Memorial Scholarships. In addition, two awardees received Sam and Frances Bailey Islands Night Memorial Scholarships: Savannah Nippa for achievement in athletics, and Alec Koonz for achievement in community service.

This year’s recipients are headed to 17 different colleges and universities, 12 in Florida and five in the eastern United States. Students are encouraged to reapply each year as they continue their education.

To be eligible, students must have a connection to Sanibel or Captiva, which means they must be residents or have parents who work on-island. To insure objectivity in making the awards, applications are evaluated and judged by a panel of independent education professionals located off-island who have no connection to the applicants.

Over the past 14 years, the program has distributed 312 scholarships totaling $459,500. It has been made possible by the community’s support of the fundraising activities that the club holds each year, including its Spaghetti Dinner, Diner’s Delight coupon book, golf tournament and also donations.