Mary Mabins, Pensacola State College
Spring is turning out to be the most wonderful time of the year for Pensacola State College student Carolyn Lungaro.
Lungaro was one of 18 PSC students recently awarded Cantonment Rotary Club scholarships. Earlier this month, the Culinary Management major also won a bronze medal at the SkillsUSA Florida 2021 Virtual State Leadership and Skills Conference.
“Thanks everyone for believing in me,” Lungaro, a Louisiana transplant, told members of the Cantonment Rotary Club during a scholarship luncheon held Wednesday, April 28, at St. Luke United Methodist Church in Pensacola.
“This scholarship will help me reach my dream of earning a college degree – something that I never considered possible when I was younger,” said the 60-year-old who wants to eventually own a food truck specializing in Cajun cuisine.
Music students – Amanda Duffey, Carlos Lopez, Lauren Mills and Lacie Scholz were awarded $1,000 Ike and Carolyn Hicks Terry Music Endowed Scholarships. Duffey, a classical guitar student, and Lopez, a trombonist, performed at the luncheon.
The late Ike Terry was a member of the Escambia County School Board and an organist at First United Methodist Church.
Recipients of the $1,500 Ted Ciano Vocational Endowed Scholarship were Leon Dobbins II and Devon Luallen, both engineering technology-advanced manufacturing majors; Dominic Watson, a heating, ventilation and air conditioning student; and Dalton Alewine, a welding technology major.
Watson said he would use the money to buy more tools for his courses.
The late Ted Ciano was a Cantonment Rotary Club president and an avid supporter of Pensacola State’s occupational programs.
Layton Davis, an architectural design and construction technology major; Briana Esterberg, a nursing student; Alexis Faller, a graphic design major; and Casey Taylor, a radiology student; were awarded $600 Vocational I Endowed Scholarships.
Recipients of the $500 Vocational II Endowed Scholarships were Lungaro, business major Keshia Dunklin, health services management major Coby Myers and graphic technology student Autumn Notley.
Paralegal Studies students – Sarah Dawson and Alyssa Vasquez – both received $500 Legal Assistant Endowed Scholarships.
Pensacola State faculty members Michael Listau, Director of Workforce Education; Dr. Kenneth Phillips, head of the Performing Arts Department; Dr. Natasha Simpson-Robinson, Paralegal Program Coordinator and business professor; Dr. Barbara Rodriquez, Business Department Head; Joe Stallings, music and theater professor; along with Mikenzie Francis, PSC Foundation Donor Relationship Manager, were on hand for the scholarship ceremony.
Don Snowden, retired head of the PSC Performing Arts Department, also attended the event.
Ray Asherfeld, Cantonment Rotary Club Foundation chairman, thanked Snowden for helping start the scholarship program.
“We awarded twice as many scholarships this year because we missed last year,” explained Asherfeld about the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Club’s scholarship program. “We may do this again next year.”
Scholarship recipients not in attendance were Alewine, Davis, Dobbins, Dunklin, Esterberg, Faller, Luallen, Myers and Taylor.
In a prepared statement, Esterberg thanked the Rotary Club for investing in her.
“Every bit of this award will help me finish nursing school as debt-free as possible and provide me the opportunity to continue my education with a bachelor’s degree,” she wrote in the statement.
Taylor also was unable to attend the luncheon but sent a thank you note.
“Thank you for your generous donation to help me reach my goal of working in the radiography field,” he wrote.
In her statement, Dunklin shared she is a business student who has been taking part-time classes for the past three years.
“Receiving this scholarship motivates me to maintain my high GPA and earn my degree,” Dunklin said, adding she has a 3.62 grade point average.
Faller also apologized for being unable to attend.
“Your support means a lot to me. It’s an honor to be considered for this scholarship,” she said. “These funds will help me afford my courses in the fall.”
In his note, Myers said the scholarship funds will help him to stay on track to becoming a registered nurse.
“I believe that education is the key to success in helping others. I aspire to ascertain my nursing degree to be able to continue in my current career path and to care for others who are in need,” he added.
The Cantonment Rotary Club has six endowed scholarships with the PSC Foundation ─ Cantonment Rotary Club Culinary Endowed Scholarship, Cantonment Rotary Club Ike and Carolyn Hicks Terry Music Endowed Scholarship, Cantonment Rotary Club Ted Ciano Vocational Endowed Scholarship, Cantonment Rotary Club Vocational I Endowed Scholarship, Cantonment Rotary Club Vocational II Endowed Scholarship and the Cantonment Rotary Club Legal Assistant Endowed Scholarship. The six endowments total more than $164,200 and will support Pensacola State students into perpetuity.