DDWS awards $ 30,000 for environmental scholarships | News, Sports, Jobs – SANIBEL-CAPTIVA
In accordance with state pandemic guidelines, the “Ding” This year, the Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge remotely awarded $ 30,700 in conservation scholarships to 14 area students from the surrounding five counties. During its 15 years of existence, the DDWS Environmental Scholarship Program has awarded a total of $ 199,500 to deserving students.
“The company is committed to educating the youth of today to become the conservation stewards of tomorrow”, DDWS Education Committee Chair Wendy Kindig said. “We are working with businesses, families and individuals to provide annual scholarships to outstanding students pursuing degrees related to conservation, wildlife biology, environmental engineering, policy and science. Many thanks to our scholarship sponsors for their support.
Eleven donors sponsored the scholarships this year. Instead of the traditional physical awards ceremony, DDWS invited fellows to submit a video to share their education and career plans with donors.
Two Richard Bailey Scholarships, named in memory of a longtime shelter volunteer and donated by his family, have been awarded to Blade Kalikow, a recent graduate of Community High School in Naples, who is heading to Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts, to study environmental engineering; and Izabella Ferjiani, a graduate of Lemon Bay High in Englewood who will be studying marine science at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg.
The Mike and Terry Baldwin Fellowship, named in honor of the outgoing president of DDWS and his wife – a member of the board of trustees emeritus – was awarded to Mallory Poff, a former student of Barron Collier High (Naples) who studies the environmental engineering at Elon University in North Carolina.
Dara Craig, a native of Sanibel and a former student of Cypress Lake High (Fort Myers) attending the Environmental Sciences program at the University of Oregon, received the Dr. Andrew and Laura Dahlem scholarship. The Dahlems live part-time on Sanibel; their family honors them with a named scholarship.
Robert Marlin Smith, a North Fort Myers alumnus studying marine and environmental sciences at Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers, received the Dr. H. Randall Deming Endowed Fellowship for Conservation and Environmental Studies. Deming’s family established the scholarship in 2016 as a permanent scholarship in his memory.
Skyler Lowden, a Fort Myers High alumnus attending the University of Miami in the field of architecture, received the “Ding” Darling Conservation Fellowship, made possible by an anonymous donor.
Two Leslie & Hans Fleischner Fellowships were awarded to Shannon Dougherty, a Cape Coral High graduate who intends to study sustainability science at Mercer University in Atlanta, Georgia; and Micah Evans, a graduate of Gulf Coast High (Naples), who will go to the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, to study ocean engineering. The Fleischners are part-time residents of Sanibel whose love of the island environment has inspired them to sponsor the scholarships for several years.
Alexandria Henson, a North Fort Myers High graduate who will major in environmental studies at the University of Florida at Gainesville, received the Mary Elaine Jacobson Memorial Fellowship, made possible by the Sanibel-Captiva Audubon Society.
In honor of the late and longtime member of the DDWS Board of Directors and Education Committee and her husband, and in partnership with DDWS, the Win and Marilyn Kloosterman Memorial Fellowship has been awarded to the graduate student at Purdue University (West Lafayette, Indiana), Taylor Sorrell, a Palmetto Ridge High alumnus in Naples studying bioengineering.
William Sobczak, a former Barron Collier High (Naples) who studies environmental engineering at UF, received the Barry and Francine Litofsky scholarship, in memory of two former volunteers at the shelter.
The Tarpon Bay Explorers Scholarship has been awarded to North Fort Myers High graduate Tate Williams who will be studying Environmental Engineering at FGCU. TBE, the JN leisure concession “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge, started the original DDWS scholarship program in 2006.
Two Jane Werner Environmental Fellowships, established in 2011 as the first permanent DDWS Fellowship, have been awarded to Alexandra Polk, a Fort Myers High alumnus studying environmental science and marine biology at the University of Florida from the South to Tampa; and Mark Leone, who previously attended Estero High and the FGCU Accelerated Collegiate Experience program, and is now heading to Stanford University in Stanford, Calif., to major in civil engineering. The family of the late Werner, who volunteered at the shelter for 25 years, established the scholarship fund in his honor.
“These students are part of the big ‘Ding’ Darling family,” Kindig said. “We welcome them again as scholarship applicants next year and as fellow conservation stewards in the years to come.
The DDWS will award scholarships starting at $ 1,000 each at the end of the 2021-2022 school year. High school and college students living in Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Glades and Hendry counties and pursuing careers in biology, conservation and environmental studies are eligible.
For an inquiry or more information, visit dingdarlingsociety.org/articles/student-scholarships.
Individuals and businesses interested in establishing a named scholarship of $ 1,000 or more for the 2021-22 school year can contact Lynnae Messina at 239-472-1100 ext. 233.