Semester 1 - A Success Story
Congratulations to our 93 Take Stock scholars for achieving an impressive average GPA of 3.39, with the freshmen class earning a 3.59 to lead the way. Our students could not achieve this level of success without the support, encouragement and guidance of our outstanding mentors. By providing college scholarships and the support of a mentor, Take Stock in Children is investing in a bright future for our deserving at-risk students!

Applications are now being accepted for Take Stock Class of 2023. 8th grade SCPS students who qualify for free/reduced lunch and have a 2.5 GPA or better are encouraged to apply.  25 students will be selected to receive the support of a caring mentor, college readiness services provided by a college success coach, and a 2-Year college tuition scholarship upon high school graduation! Take Stock Student Applications are due February 22nd.
Student Spotlight - College Bound
Parker Barham
“The Take Stock Scholarship, to me, means the perfect door of opportunity that I wouldn’t otherwise have. It means the freedom to choose an education that I wouldn’t otherwise have access to. Take Stock has opened up so many doors for me, as well as given me guidance in all areas of my life, including the ability to plan for the future. Take Stock has made high school infinitely more manageable.”
A focused young man, Parker plans to attend the University of North Florida majoring in Finance. He works 30 hours a week at Chipotle while managing his classes. His favorite subject this year is Government because he is interested in how it works, especially since it directly impacts him. Even though he read “Brave New World” for an English assignment, he thought it was phenomenal. “ I loved all of the topics it tackled—with the most notable one being the struggle between stability and freedom, and which of those brings true happiness.” Thanks to his mentor, Bob Goldman, and the Take Stock staff, Parker is ready for college and his next chapter!
Mentor Spotlight – Student Support
Cheryl Blakeney
“My most rewarding memory was when one of my mentees - the first in her family to graduate - got her diploma. I sat with her mom, grandma and brother, and we were all in tears as we watched her walk across the stage at graduation. It is times like those that keeps me going and knowing I'm touching the lives of young people."
Over the past decade and a half, Cheryl Blakeney has mentored nine students (her current mentees, juniors at Lake Brantley High School, are pictured above). Each student has been different, and she enjoys getting to know them and a little about their families. Cheryl started as a tutor for Seminole County schools before joining TSIC. For the past six years, she also has served on the TSIC Leadership Committee guiding the program. Kids are her passion as she demonstrates by volunteering at Kids House of Seminole County, Community Based Care of Central Florida, Boys Town and New Hope for Kids. Thank you, Cheryl, for investing in our next generation!
Alumni Spotlight - UCF and Beyond
Steven Kuzma
“TSIC was a world of help. Without the financial burden of paying tuition, TSIC gave me the assurance and encouragement to be involved and take risks. If I failed or succeeded, I knew I had the support system to build me back up or cheer me on."
A native Floridian, Steven started classes at the University of Central Florida the summer after graduating from Hagerty High School. After earning a bachelor's in Entrepreneurship and a minor in Hospitality Management, Steven joined Expedia Group--the world's leading technology travel company. He manages accounts for hotel properties in West Florida. His most enjoyable experience during college (other than cheering on the Knights during football games) was the ability to build his brand—whether focusing on academics or building social skills and relationships. Steven’s advice for current Take Stock students: “ Find your passion. Network. Take Risks. Have Fun. And don't forget to get ‘A’s in your classes!” 

If you know someone who would make a great mentor, we would love the opportunity to tell them about Take Stock. Does your business offer employees the opportunity to volunteer in the community? Take Stock staff will come to your office and share what it means to be a mentor. All it takes is 30 minutes a week to change a life. Your referrals are welcomed and appreciated! For more information, c ontact Beth Arigo or call 407-320-0301.  
Take Stock in Children, Inc. is a nonprofit organization, transforming Florida one student at a time. Our mission is to break the cycle of poverty for low-income, academically qualified students by providing opportunities for a post-secondary education. We offer college scholarships to students, provide caring volunteer mentors, and instill hope for a better life. 

The Foundation for SCPS mission is to enhance the quality of education in Seminole County Public Schools by: Raising and distributing funds and in-kind donations; Fostering involvement in schools by business and the community; Providing recognition and rewards for outstanding contribution to, and performance within, the school system.
Changing Lives with Scholarships, Mentors and Hope!