~ SCHOLARSHIPS ~


To inquire about the Boca Grande Woman's Club Scholarship Program, please write to: 

BGWC P.O. Box 1164 Boca Grande, FL 33921 or email us at BGWC33921@gmail.com

to request an application. OR...


CLICK HERE to download the BGWC Scholarship Application


 Boca Grande Woman’s Club Scholarship Program

 

Since the inception of the Boca Grande Woman’s Club Scholarship Program, the landscape of higher education in the United States has changed and grown exponentially. And, so too, has the Club’s program.  

 

Over the years the Club has adapted the Scholarship Program to 1) become more inclusive by broadening the pool of potential candidates while continuing to address the need in the island community; 2) develop an increased awareness among eligible students, and  build an important relationship with Lemon Bay High School; 3) formalize a committee of BGWC volunteers dedicated to maintaining a comprehensive application process; and 4) institute financial plans  to insure support for successful students.  

 

In 1971 the Club began supporting higher education by awarding two students financial aid.  The Club had long supported programs related to children such as the Boy Scouts and the Hacienda Girls Ranch but this marked the first effort to provide scholarships to students seeking a college education. During these early years, the Club President served as the chair of the Scholarship Committee which included two to three other members.

 

The scholarship program was formalized under the leadership of Mrs. Donald “Greenie” Hooker who was elected president of the Club in 1982 and assumed the chairmanship of the committee.  The Club officially budgeted $2500 for the program and began working with the principal of Lemon Bay High School and participating in the school’s annual Awards Night.  Greenie was dedicated to working with the students and reviewing the reports they submitted.  Each year she gave an in-depth report to the Club on the achievements and progress of the students. During the first decade of the formal program, the Club awarded $53,600 to 17 students.  There continued to be significant growth in the program during the 1990s with 32 students receiving $208,000. Committee chairmen during this period included Mrs. Zweck Bronner, Mary O’Bannon, Carole Geoghagan, Barbara Murphy, Barbara Williams, Patsy Burke, and Linda Aley.

 

In 2010 the Scholarship Committee began discussing new criteria in the application process to reflect changing demographics of Boca Grande as well as the different avenues available for students to seek an education. To accommodate these changes, the Committee restructured the application process and form.  Press releases were sent to local newspapers announcing the application deadline and encouraging local students to apply.  Within two years, the number of awards increased to 15-20 new students each year.  The rise in numbers also reflected a national increase in college-bound students. During the last eight years, over 111 students were awarded $1,517,000 in financial support.  Committee chairmen during this period included Ginny Bryant, Louise Head, and Stephanie Vick.

 

Today’s Woman’s Club scholarship program contains critical elements from the earliest days to the most recent adaptations. Applicants to the program must be applying for admission to a school of higher education; must demonstrate a B or better high school grade average; must meet residency and/or work requirements; must demonstrate financial need by completing the FAFSA form; and must complete and submit the BGWC application by February 1.  Once a student is accepted into the program, he or she is guaranteed continued support until graduation as long as the Club’s requirements for grades, course loads, and reporting are met.  Each semester scholars must submit a personal letter stating their goals and achievements, including extra-curricular activities, along with a copy of their official grade transcript and proof of enrollment of 12 hours for the up-coming semester.

 

Student retention has been one of the major topics in higher education since the 2008 economic downturn. For instance, only 59% of students seeking a bachelor’s degree at 4-year institutions in the fall of 2009 completed the degree in six years.  Students who participate in the BGWC scholarship program complete their education in 2 or 4 years at a rate well above the national norm. The Scholarship Committee believes this success rate is partially attributable to the committee’s close monitoring of students’ progress and the development of personal relationships.

 

Under the Club’s bylaws, the President serves as an ex officio member of the committee and appoints the committee chair. Appointments to the committee are made jointly by the Committee Chair, President and 1stVice President. Each spring, the committee submits a report and funding request to the Executive Board.

 

Presently serving on the committee are Stephanie Vick, Chair; Pam McMillin, Nell Cox, Mary Kountz, Louise Head, Deb Nash and Rose Marie Iovino.  

 

Over the past 47 years, the Club has awarded over $2.5 million in financial assistance to over 250 students.  This investment by the Club, made with dollars raised from the community, has realized excellent results not only for the students but also as compared to national outcomes for all students receiving financial aid. BRAVO to the diligent students and the hard-working members of the Boca Grande Woman’s Club.


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(Note: This page contains the monthly reports from our scholarship Chair, Stephanie Vick, beginning with her most recent report.  Please read further down - below the "From our Scholarship recipients" section - to  "catch up" on any previous news.)


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FROM SCHOLARSHIP RECIPIENTS: 



"I am sad and excited to say this will be my last semester before i graduate with my degree in December. After working in Subway through college,this March I was able to secure apart-time job in the local library as a Library Technician. The library position is something in my field of study so I enjoy working in a field that I have every intention of working in for many years to come. I want to thank you all for the opportunities this scholarship has given me. Soon I will be a graduate with a Bachelor's Degree in a field of study I have always loved. With your support I was even able to graduate early! I have future plans and feel confident this semester will be fantastic. "


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Dear Boca Grande Woman 's Club Scholarship Committee, 

I would like to start out by thanking you for the scholarship that you have granted me. My last spring semester went well, I have attached the grades to this letter. This summer I decided to take three classes which were/are Speech, Art appreciation, and Intermediate Algebra. I completed speech with an A in the class, my two other classes have not ended yet but I expect to pass them with acceptable grades. 

Besides summer classes I have continued to work at the Boca Grande Child Care Center. I am very excited to be getting so close to getting my A.A degree, and also getting closer to finally be able to get into my major which is Elementary Education. 1 really appreciate receiving this grant. It is going make a substantial difference in my future, and words cannot express how thankful I am. 


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REPORTS FROM OUR SCHOLARSHIP CHAIR