Catholic Community Foundation presents 23 scholarships
The Catholic Community Foundation of Southwest Florida Inc. honored 23 scholarship winners during a luncheon on May 19, 2022, at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Retreat Center in Venice. This was the first in-person scholarship luncheon in three years.
The recipients of the Mary Fran Carroll, Coseglia, Schaerf, Toner, Schwarz and Carey Scholarships were recognized for their outstanding academic achievements and for their commitment of continuing their education in pursuit of wide-ranging career paths such as education, medicine, business, engineering and more. The Foundation Scholarship Committee carefully reviewed 142 applications before determining the winners. Many of the Foundation Board members were present for the luncheon.
Michael Morse, Executive Director of the Catholic Community Foundation, congratulated the new scholars, saying the young men and women are worthy to forever be known as Foundation Scholars. “This is the most exciting thing that we do. Being able to get to meet you as scholarship winners and hear your stories, for us, is a blessing.”
Foundation Scholarship Committee Chair Janet Beach expressed an appreciation for each of the scholarship recipients and expressed amazement in not just their academic achievements, but the activities all the applicants were involved in, including the number of volunteer hours they completed. “I see a bright future ahead for all of you.”
The Mary Fran Carroll Scholarship provides a total of 15 academic scholarships, each valued at $3,000, to residents of Sarasota County and is available for tuition, books and fees. This year there were 13 traditional scholarship winners (high school graduates pursuing an undergraduate degree) and two non-traditional winners (an adult learner seeking an advanced education after being away from school for a number of years). The scholarship is renewable annually up to a total of five academic years for students maintaining a minimum unweighted GPA of 3.2 or greater, while also making progress toward their career goal. In the past year, there were 31 students who had their scholarship renewed.
Mary Fran Carroll Scholar Milana Ivanenko, a graduate of Venice High School who will be studying chemical engineering at the University of Florida, thanked the Foundation for the scholarship and said her goal in life is to “help society fix problems and be able to create something that helps people other than me.”
The Frederick W. Schaerf, M.D., Ph.D. Neuroscience Scholarship provides a $4,000 one-time scholarship to a graduating senior from Bishop Verot Catholic High School in Fort Myers interested in pursuing a career in neuroscience. This was the third year the scholarship was offered.
Schaerf Scholarship recipient Arielle Dicang will be attending the University of Florida with plans to be a pharmacist. “Thank you to the board. It means a lot to receive this scholarship; I met the son of Mr. Schaerf at a retreat, and heard his son tell his father’s story, so earning this has special meaning.”
The Frank and Florence Coseglia Scholarship provides a one-time scholarship of $1,167 to one graduating senior from each of the four Catholic High Schools within the Diocese of Venice. The winners were nominated by their high schools and approved by the Foundation Board.
The Foundation also presented the first-ever Barry L. Carey M.D. Scholarship, which provides a $400 renewable college scholarship for tuition, books, fees, and housing expenses to practicing Catholic High School seniors graduating this year from Catholic, private, home school, or public schools within the 10 counties of the Diocese of Venice in Florida. Scholarship recipients must be the first generation in their family to attend a college or university.
Also new this year, is the James and Margaret Schwarz Scholarship. This provides a one-time college scholarship to be awarded for tuition, books, fees, and housing expenses for a student graduating from Cardinal Mooney Catholic High School.
During the scholarship ceremony, the recipients shared their personal experiences as well as college and career goals. Each expressed their appreciation for the scholarship from the Foundation. Many specifically explained how the scholarship money will assist in lessening the financial burden of attending college and pursuing their career goals.
The Catholic Community Foundation of Southwest Florida Inc. was established to provide philanthropic opportunities for individuals, such as Mary Fran Carroll, to create lasting gifts in support of Catholic programs and ministries within the Diocese of Venice. This year, the Foundation is on track to distribute $5.3 million in endowed support for Catholic schools, Parishes, Seminarian education, programs for the needy, college scholarships and more.
To learn more about the Catholic Community Foundation, please contact Michael Morse at 941-441-1124 or by email at Morse@dioceseofvenice.org. You can also visit the Foundation website at www.CCFDioceseofvenice.org.
Mary Fran Carroll Scholars – traditional
Alexis Mendieta, Suncoast Polytechnical High School, Florida Gulf Coast University
Axia Salas, Sarasota High School, Florida State University
Peri LeBonte, Cardinal Mooney Catholic High School, Tufts University
Milana Ivanenko, Venice High School; University of Florida
Kassidy Saba, Sarasota High School, Florida State University
Chiaralis Brown, Riverview High School, University of South Florida
Mitch Laurone, Sarasota High School, University of South Florida
Napat Sammacheep, Venice High School, University of Florida
Dana Molina, Riverview High School, Columbia University
Charles Nye, Sarasota Christian School, Florida State University
Johanna Patino-Murillo, University of Tampa
Ericka Delva, North Port High School, University of South Florida
Shannon Dowdy, Venice High School, University of Florida
Mary Fran Carroll Scholars – non-traditional
Danielle Smyth, non-traditional, Keiser University
Alexa de Gannes, non-traditional, University of Florida
Trinity Shipe, Cardinal Mooney Catholic High School, Florida Southern University
Jesse Herrera, St. John Neumann Catholic High School, University of South Florida
Mary Kinnick, Donahue Catholic Academy of Ave Maria Parish, Ave Maria University
Anna Latell, Bishop Verot Catholic High School, University of Florida
Barry L. Carey, M.D. Scholarship
Aaron Acevedo, LaBelle High School, University of South Florida
James and Margaret Schwarz Scholarship
McKayla Cantrell, Cardinal Mooney Catholic High School, St. John’s University, N.Y.
Frederick W. Schaerf, M.D., Ph.D. Neuroscience Scholarship
Arielle Dicang, Bishop Verot Catholic High School, University of Florida
Dr. Steve Toner Math Award
Ella Bartels, St. John Neumann Catholic High School, University of Florida.
Above – 2022-23 Scholarship Luncheon attendees on May 19th at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Retreat Center in Venice
Written by Bob Reddy, Diocese of Venice Catholic Community Foundation presents 23 scholarships – Diocese of Venice