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Tequon Chatman

Applications Open for 2019 Scholarships

The Uncommon Friends Foundation is now accepting applications for its 2019-2020 school year student scholarships, which will be awarded to deserving individuals(including veterans, single parents, grieving youth, and the disabled) who are pursuing post-secondary degrees in education, law, technology, healthcare, technical, and other studies. The deadline for nominations is April 1, 2019.

Nominees must reside in Lee, Charlotte, Collier, Glades, or Hendry Counties, need financial assistance, excel in school and/or their personal lives, and possess high quality character traits.Scholarships vary in application requirements and commitments, duration and financial amounts, educational programs, and institutions.

Visit https://uncommonfriends.org/scholarships/opportunities/ for scholarship application forms and specific requirements of each scholarship. Completed applications and/or any questions should be directed to scholarships@uncommonfriends.org. Winners will be announced by early summer and will be honored at the Uncommon Friends Foundation’s Uncommon Evening on Thursday, November 14.

Uncommon Friends Foundation board member Susan Minaya chairs the scholarship committee that includes volunteers and community service organizations.

NEW! Cape Coral Kiwanis Club ($2,500) – for two disadvantaged students of any age to help defray tuition, books and supplies costs at any educational institution.

NEW! Florida Restaurant & Lodging Association (FRLA) Hospitality Scholarship ($1,000) – for any age student seeking an education and/or career in the hospitality industry to help defray tuition, books and supplies costs.

NEW! HomeTech ($2,500)– for any age student to help defray the costs of tuition, books and supplies to attend a trade school.

NEW! Jared Basco Pay It Forward Scholarship–For any age student pursuing any career who demonstrates generosity through activities such as community service, financial giving or volunteerism that has impacted his or her life, and from which others may benefit.

NEW! Smith Family Trust Bonita Springs Charter School Scholarship ($1,000)–For students from Bonita Springs Charter School who demonstrate strong character and ethics in their everyday life.

NEW! Valerie’s House Scholarship for a Grieving Child – Two $1,000 Scholarships –For any age student who has lost a parent or sibling and participates in Valerie’s House’s grief support programs to help defray tuition, books and supplies costs.

NEW! Waste Pro Scholarship ($1,000) – for any age student to help defray the cost of tuition, books and supplies to attend any post-secondary school of their choice.

Berne Davis Future Teacher Scholarship ($5,000) – For a student enrolled in a program leading to a degree in education.

James F. Chelius, Jr. Scholarship for Disabled Students ($1,000)– For any age student with a disability such as dyslexia, hearing, sight, physical, epilepsy, and cerebral palsy who has ambition and positive character traits.

Florida Prepaid College Foundation Scholarship– Covers two years of state college tuition and fees for a freshman or sophomore who meets specific conditions and stays free of drugs and crime.

Health Sciences Scholarship ($1,000) – For any age student working toward a degree in a health field, (e.g., nursing, dental hygiene, technologist, or therapist) to help defray cost of books or education.

Hilliard Scholarships ($4,000) – Two, two-year scholarships for high school seniors residing in either Glades or Hendry Counties to attend Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU).

Single Parent Scholarship($1,000) – For a deserving single parent who has overcome difficult obstacles to further his or her education and gain skills to enter the workforce.

Special Recognition Scholarship – Three scholarships for any age student to help defray cost of books or education for one semester.

Technical College Scholarship –For any age student to help defray costs of tuition, books and supplies at a technical college.

Veteran’s Scholarship ($1,000) – For a deserving military veteran of any age to help defray costs of books or education.

For more scholarship information, visit the Scholarships section of http://uncommonfriends.org/ or email scholarships@uncommonfriends.org.

Uncommon Evening Sponsorships Available

Sponsorships and individual tickets are available for the 2016 Uncommon Evening event on Thursday, November 3, 2016, hosted by the Uncommon Friends Foundation. Kerri Goldsmith, Financial Advisor with HBKS Wealth Advisors, has been named chairperson of the event.

Sponsorships range from $1,500 to $10,000. The presenting sponsor will take to the stage and announce the winner of the Business Ethics Award, and additional sponsors will present the Champion Teacher and Student Scholarship awards. Sponsorships already committed for 2016 include BB&T Oswald Trippe and Company, HBKS Wealth Advisors, Henderson-Franklin, Lee County Electric Cooperative, and Florida SouthWestern State College.

The event will be held for the second year in the waterfront Gale McBride Pavilion at the Burroughs Home & Gardens located at 2505 First Street in Fort Myers, FL 33901. The evening will start at 6:00 p.m. with historic home tours, followed by outdoor entertainment, a plated dinner, and the awards program.

Visit https://uncommonfriends.org/ ticket reservations and sponsorships information, or contact Kerri Goldsmith at kgoldsmith@hbkswealth.com or Uncommon Friends Foundation Executive Director Angela Melvin at angela@uncommonfriends.org. All of the money raised at Uncommon Evening supports the Uncommon Friends Foundation and the historic preservation of the Burroughs Home & Gardens.

For more information, to reserve the pavilion for meetings and events, or arrange for guided historical tours, call (239) 337-9503.

Nominations Open for Teacher of the Year

Nominations for the Character Education Champion Teacher of the Year are open at Uncommon Friends Foundation. Elementary, middle and high school teachers in public, private and charter schools in Lee, Charlotte, Collier, Glades, and Hendry counties are eligible and can nominate themselves or be nominated by others. Nominated individuals must have taught lessons from the Uncommon Friends Foundation’s Character Education curriculum, exhibit characteristics of the Uncommon Friends in their personal and professional life, and have the endorsement of a school administrator.

The award will be presented to the 2016 Character Education Champion Teacher during the Uncommon Evening annual gala to be held on November 3, 2016. The annual award recognizes an outstanding educator who incorporates “Lessons Learned from the Uncommon Friends” to teach character education in his or her classroom. Nominated educators also inspire students to adopt the quality characteristics of the five Uncommon Friends, Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, Harvey Firestone, Dr. Alexis Carrel, and Charles Lindbergh—intellectual giants who helped shape the 20th century.

2015 Winner Patricia Cicero with Carlo Cicero

Last year’s Character Education Champion Teacher of the Year was Patricia Cicero of Pinewoods Elementary School in Estero, Florida.

Criteria and the nomination form are available at www.uncommonfriends.org. The nomination form and a letter of support from the nominee’s supervising administrator must be submitted by email to Angela@UncommonFriends.org no later than May 1, 2016. Additional information are available by contacting Angela Melvin, Executive Director of the Uncommon Friends Foundation at 239-337-9503.

The Uncommon Friends Foundation is a not-for-profit 501 (c) 3 organization established in 1993 and dedicated to lifelong character building among today’s youth and business leaders. Its mission is to promote character education in schools, business ethics in the workplace, and historic preservation of the Burroughs Home and James Newton archives.

Applications Open for 2016 UFF Scholarships

The Uncommon Friends Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit committed to building character education and integrity in tomorrow’s leaders, is now accepting application for its 2016 scholarships.  Scholarships will be awarded to deserving students, veterans, struggling adults, and single parents who are pursuing degrees in education, law, technology, and other studies. Nominees will be from Lee, Charlotte, Collier, Glades, or Hendry Counties and need financial assistance, excel in school and or in their personal life, and possess high quality character traits. Scholarships vary in application requirements, duration and financial amounts, while some are for specific schools such as Florida Gulf Coast University, High Tech Center, and PACE Center for Girls of Lee County.

Scholarship application forms and requirements can be found at http://uncommonfriends.org/scholarships/applications-nominations/. Application packets require an application form, as well as an essay from the applicant to show how they emulate the character traits of the Uncommon Friends Foundation. Applicants must also supply a digital color photograph and include one or more letters from a personal sponsor, such as a service agency, school counselor, teacher, or principal. Applicants must submit complete application packets by April 1, 2016 via email to scholarships@uncommonfriends.org.  Winners will be announced in May.  All winners will be honored at the Uncommon Friends Foundation Uncommon Evening annual event to be held Thursday, November 3, from 6 – 9 pm at the Burroughs Home and Gardens Riverfront Pavilion. Tickets and sponsorships to the event can be purchased by emailing angela@uncommonfriends.org.

The annual scholarship committee has been chaired for the last 13 years by Uncommon Friends Foundation Board Member Brenda Stewart and several other volunteers. Working together with many community service organizations serving special and underserved populations, the committee identifies deserving individuals who will benefit through its needs and character based scholarships. Over the past 21 years, the foundation has awarded nearly 470 educational scholarships totaling hundreds of thousands of dollars.

The Uncommon Friends Foundation is a nonprofit organization established in 1993 and dedicated to lifelong character building among today’s youth and business leaders. It promotes character education in schools, ethics in the workplace, and preservation of the historic Burroughs Home & Gardens and James Newton Archives. The Uncommon Friends Foundation is located at the Burroughs Home & Gardens on the riverfront in downtown Fort Myers at 2505 First Street. Public tours are available by reservation. For more information, visit http://uncommonfriends.org/ or call Executive Director Angela Melvin at (239) 337-9503.

Uncommon Friends Foundation

2016 Scholarship Award Categories

Three Hilliard Scholarships for $2,000 each for high school seniors in Glades and Hendry Counties  to attend FGCU – For high school seniors residing in either Glades or Hendry Counties who will be attending Florida Gulf Coast University. Nominees should need financial assistance, have the potential to succeed in school, and possesses positive character traits.

Florida Prepaid College Foundation for freshmen and sophomore high school students for two years at a state college – Uncommon Friends Foundation and Florida Prepaid College Foundation cooperate to provide two-year scholarships for state college tuition and fees to select freshmen and sophomore high school students who contract to succeed in high school, stay free of drugs and crime, and fulfill other scholarship conditions.

Special Recognition Scholarship for one semester – For applicant who needs financial assistance, has the desire and potential to succeed in school, and possesses positive character traits. It is to help defray costs of books or education.

High Tech Center Scholarship for one term – To assist a student of any age with tuition, books and supplies for one future term at High Tech Center to defray costs not covered by other scholarships or grants.

Future Teacher Scholarship for $1,000 – For students enrolled in a program leading to a college degree in education.

Single Parent Scholarship for $1,000 – To help a single parent further his or her education to gain skills needed to enter the workforce. This scholarship is focused on single parents who have overcome extraordinary obstacles and demonstrate high character and integrity.

Lee County Bar Association Scholarship for $2,000 – For students enrolled in a program leading to a degree in law to assist with tuition, books and supplies at any Florida college or university. It recognizes a student’s exemplary achievements in high school and performance in the Lee County Bar Association’s Mock Trial competition.

Veteran’s Scholarship for $1,000 – For a deserving veteran of any age who has a financial need, the desire and potential to succeed in school, and possesses positive character traits to help defray the costs of books or education.

PACE Center for Girls of Lee County Scholarship for $1,000 – PACE will nominate a current student who has completed the Uncommon Friends Character Education curriculum and demonstrates the high character traits of the Uncommon Friends Foundation, including loyalty, friendship, honesty, and integrity.