Four local high school students have a head start after graduation thanks to a local organization. The Valrico FishHawk Chamber of Commerce (VFCC) recently awarded scholarships to four graduating seniors: Ashton Kitchiner and Madison Giovenco from Newsome High School as well as Connor Newell and Levi Littlefield from Lennard High School.
The students received scholarships for $750 at a college, university or vocational-technical college at the chamber’s April meeting.
According to Dr. Bob Lutz, owner of Motion ChiroTherapy and scholarship chair at the VFCC, Newell and Littlefield are involved in Ring Power’s ThinkBIG program.
“They will alternate every eight weeks between classroom instruction at South Georgia Technical College and a paid internship at a Ring Power branch, putting their schooling into practice with on-the-job training,” said Dr. Lutz. “Upon successful completion of the program, they will receive an associate degree in applied technology.”
Newell has been a member of the Lennard Ag Department, National Honor Society and FFA and has volunteered for over 40 hours with various organizations. He is an accomplished marine fiberglass repair technician and has been employed at Little Harbor Marina since his freshman year. His goal is to become a marine diesel technician, obtain his captain’s license and eventually captain a tugboat.
Littlefield is a new student at Lennard and has made a big impact. His teachers said he is an outgoing, funny and hardworking student. He is originally from Alabama and brings his patented mix of charm and work ethic to any activity that he tackles.
Kitchiner is graduating in the top 1 percent of his graduating class at Newsome. He volunteered over 275 hours with the Tampa Sailing Squadron teaching young children and teens how to sail. He is a member of the Newsome Lacrosse team, club lacrosse and is a lacrosse official. He was awarded the Top Male Scholar-Athlete Award in his senior year. He will be attending the University of Florida in the fall, and his goal is to pursue at least a master’s degree and own a large business.
Giovenco volunteered over 88 hours at organizations including Girls With Confidence and the Arlington Retirement Center during high school at Newsome. She is a Newsome Basketball and Track team member and played club lacrosse. She held a part-time job while serving in many various clubs and organizations. She will be attending Florida State University in the fall, and her goal is to major in biological sciences and attend either veterinary school or med school.
For more information about VFCC, visit https://valricofishhawk.org.