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Kiwanis Club awards record 37 scholarships

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  • | 4:00 a.m. August 13, 2014
  • Longboat Key
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The Kiwanis Club of Longboat Key awarded more than $66,000 in scholarships last week — double last year’s amount of $32,000.

At the club’s annual scholarship breakfast Aug. 7, at the Longboat Key Club’s Harbourside Dining Room, the club awarded 22 academic scholarships for $2,000 each and 15 technical scholarships of $1,500 each.

The number of scholarship applicants also rose to 135, up from last year’s 94 applications.

“We read and evaluated all 135 applications,” said Susan Phillips, chairwoman of the scholarship committee. “It’s very moving when you see those who don’t have financial advantages. They’re all driven and they’re intelligent, and you want to see them succeed.”

It’s the seventh year the Kiwanis Club awarded scholarships to students, who come from a variety of fields, backgrounds and age groups.

“This is one of our club’s biggest events and it’s become our tradition to award these scholarships each and every year,” Kiwanis Club President Richard Crawford said.

Crawford said that after two successful fundraisers — the Longboat Key Gourmet Lawn Party and the annual pancake breakfast — the group could afford to make this year’s scholarship breakfast its biggest yet.

Crawford and Phillips presented students with a scholarship certificate onstage and gave each the opportunity to speak to the crowd.

Gabriele Doraisamy, a junior at Southeastern University, was one of many recipients who have previously received the scholarship. This year her two sisters, Ava and Olivia Doraisamy, 18, each joined her, receiving technical scholarships to State College of Florida.

“This scholarship is huge because it shows interest from people established in the community, as well as from the younger generation about to enter the workforce,” she said. “Not only is it great to receive financial help from them, but it’s great to be able to meet and have breakfast with them.”

Savannah Schield, of Longboat Key, is a sophomore at the University of Florida. This is her second time receiving an academic scholarship from the Kiwanis Club.

“Every year since I’ve been in college, I’ve gotten help from the Kiwanis and their support really goes a long way,” Schield said. “It’s been good to be back home on the island this summer with my family, and this scholarship program is really important to all of us.”

Her father, Steve Schield, a University of Florida alumnus and senior planner with Longboat Key’s Planning, Zoning and Building Department, is a Kiwanis Club member.

The academic scholarship subcommittee in charge of selecting the students from applicants is made up of Weldon Frost, Sean McGrath, Glenn Peterson, Jim Whitman and Susan Phillips.

Bob Gault, Jim Larson, Matt Walsh and Phillips make up the technical scholarship subcommittee.



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