The Kiwanis Club of Sanibel-Captiva has announced the recipients of its annual Scholarships Awards for the upcoming 2024-25 academic year, marking the 18th year of the program.  Scholarship awardees and their family & friends were hosted at a recent Kiwanis breakfast meeting, where they received congratulations and well-wishes from Club members.

The Kiwanis Scholarship Program was established in its current form 18 years ago, and since then the Program has provided 399 individual awards, totaling over $660,000 in financial support to deserving youth.  To be eligible, students must reside in Sanibel or Captiva or have parents who work on the Islands.

The criteria used for selecting students for awards include past academic performance, community service involvement and financial means.  Applications are accepted in the spring months, and are reviewed and scored by a board of independent educators located off-island and not affiliated with the Club.

Funds to underwrite the Scholarship Program are raised through Kiwanis fundraising events throughout the year, including the Spaghetti Dinner in February, “Diners Delight” 2 for 1 Coupon Booklet sales in the summer/fall, the King Of The Rock Golf Invitational Tournament in April, plus contributions from Club members and other private donors. In addition, two special scholarships are funded by the Sam & Francis Bailey Islands Night Baseball event.

A total of $45,500 in scholarships were awarded this year, to 17 recipients headed off to a broad group of colleges and training programs..  Said Club President Jeff Blackman: “The Club was particularly gratified to be able to provide this support to our Island youth despite the disruption caused by Hurricane Ian, thanks to the generosity of our local community.”

Receiving scholarships this year were:  Brooke Adams, McKenna Adams, Ivy Ankerson, Ben Arensman, Noah Barbot, Ava Binkowski, Sam Lessinger, Arabella Lilleslatten, Riley Mann, Morgan McCarty, Jackson McKee, Kaia Miller, Ronan Pailes, Daniel Romulus, Kiandre Smaller, Daniel Trier and Amy Walker.  The special  Islands Night Awards were presented to Morgan McCarty (for Athletics) and Daniel Trier (for Community Service).

The Kiwanis Club congratulates all of this year’s recipients and wishes them success in the coming year.