Dependents of Sanibel city employees awarded scholarships
Four of the recipients are graduates of Cape high schools
Following Hurricane Charley in 2004, an endowment fund was established with the Southwest Florida Community Foundation to provide scholarships for dependents of city of Sanibel employees. This year, multiple sources contributed to the Employee Dependent Scholarship Program: the Charitable Foundation of the Islands, Southwest Florida Community Foundation endowment and Sanibel-Captiva Kiwanis Club, as well as proceeds from various city vending machines.
“Virginia Stringer and I, as co-chairs of the board for the Charitable Foundation of the Islands, are pleased to continue a decade-long collaboration with these other local participant organizations,” Chip Roach said. “The scholars are inspirations to others in our community for their achievements and the aspirations for themselves.”
The following dependents will each be awarded a $2,000 scholarship:
* Mason Eicher
A sophomore at Kent State Tuscarawas and a 2016 graduate of Mariner High School, Mason Eicher is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice, with plans to relocate in Florida where he will pursue a job in law enforcement. It is his second year at Kent State Tuscarawas, where he made the Dean’s List and plays baseball. Eicher led the team with a .370 batting average and contributed to 16 runs in the season. He is the son of Sanibel Police Department Detective John Eicher, who has been employed by the city for nine years.
* Kylie Sutton
A rising junior at Florida State University and a 2019 graduate of Ida S. Baker High School, Kylie Sutton is pursuing her undergraduate degree in health science. Following the completion of her undergraduate degree, Sutton plans to enroll in the Physician’s Assistant Program at Florida Gulf Coast University to pursue her goal of becoming a physician’s assistant in obstetrics and gynecology. It is her second year as a recipient of the scholarship. Sutton is the daughter of Sanibel Police Department Sgt. Kenneth Sutton, who has been employed by the city for nearly 18 years.
* Amber Schweitzer
A rising senior at Florida Gulf Coast University and a 2018 graduate of Ida S. Baker High School, Amber Schweitzer is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in elementary education, with plans to relocate to Illinois where she will then pursue her master’s degree and begin her career in teaching. It is her fourth year as a recipient of the scholarship. Schweitzer is the daughter of Stephen Schweitzer, tradesworker with Public Works in the Community Services Department, who has been employed by the city for nearly six years.
* Hailey Upchurch
A senior at the University of Central Florida and a 2018 graduate of Mariner High School, Hailey Upchurch is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in health sciences on a pre-clinical track, the first step in reaching her goal of attending graduate school. This past academic year, Upchurch became sergeant at arms director of the Pre-Dental Student Associa-tion and earned a spot on the Dean’s List as of Fall 2020. It is her fourth year as a recipient of the scholarship. Upchurch is the daughter of Jocelyn Upchurch-Hawkins, accounting operations manager in the Finance Department, who has been employed by the city for eight years.
* Alyssa Vetter
A senior at FGCU and a 2017 graduate of Cypress Lake High School, Alyssa Vetter is pursuing a bachelor’s degree with a dual major in supply chain management and finance. Following graduation, Vetter plans to provide services to the many individuals and small businesses affected by the pandemic, with a future goal of creating her own business that combines the use of supply chain management and finance. It is her fifth year as a recipient of the scholarship. She is the daughter of Holly Vetter, senior permit technician with the Building Branch in the Community Services De-partment, who has been employed by the city for 27 years.