SCF Holds College Reach-Out Program Awards Ceremony

(Bradenton, Fla., May 17, 2013) — Graduating seniors from area high schools and other students in State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF) College Reach-Out Program (CROP) were honored this spring at the 15th Annual CROP Awards Ceremony held at SCF Bradenton.

Gary Russell, SCF vice president of academic affairs, gave welcoming remarks and students were presented with certificates, scholarships and special achievement awards. Other participants at the ceremony included Dr. Donald Bowman, vice president of educational and student services; Dr. Mike Mears, SCF Bradenton provost and vice president of baccalaureate programs; Kristen L. Anderson, CROP's program director; and Yvette Benton, assistant principal of King Middle School and CROP activities coordinator. CROP site coordinators from participating schoolsincluded Artrice Clark, Booker Middle School; Lem Andrews, Booker High School; Sandra Alanis represented by Barbara Carmichael, Manatee High School; Kelli Douglas, Palmetto High School; and Keenan Wooten, Southeast High School.

Tomas Carrillo, SCF alumni and CROP multicultural specialist, and Elizabeth Bazan, CROP alumni and SCF student, presented a video about what the program meant to participating students. CROP alumni Louguens Charles and Yakayra Mendez shared their experiences in the CROP program and encouraged students to continue their education and actively participate in the CROP program. Congratulations and support were received from state Reps. Greg Steube and Ray Pilon who were in Tallahassee at the time of the event.

CROP, a statewide program funded through a grant from the Florida Department of Education, is designed to increase the number of students who successfully complete postsecondary education.

SCF's school-based CROP program assists targeted students by providing motivational and educational activities to keep them on a college-bound track.

Students honored as "CROP Student of the Year" for their school included Erinn Lee (Booker Middle School); Bethzabet Alvarez (Bayshore High School); Diedra McRae (Booker High School); Tarrell Boynton (Manatee High School); Alexis Hernandez (Palmetto High School); Debora Castor (Riverview High School); and Brianna Lee (Southeast High School). Michael Braxton from Braden River High School also was recognized as a student of the year by the CROP program.

Ninety-seven percent (37 of 38) of this year's CROP seniors plan to continue their education after graduating from high school.

Fifty-three percent of CROP seniors (20) will start college in June through the 2013 Summer Bridge Program at SCF. Students earned program scholarships of approximately $900. CROP graduates who attend SCF also are eligible to receive tuition and book scholarships.

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