SCF Foundation Receives Hurricane Relief Grant

The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB) has awarded the State College of Florida Foundation a $2,000 grant to help replace biotechnology material lost in a power outage during Hurricane Irma.

ASBMB is a nonprofit scientific and educational organization with over 12,000 members. Its mission is to advance the science of biochemistry and molecular biology and to promote the understanding of the molecular nature of life processes. Founded in 1906, the Society is based in Rockville, Maryland and publishes the Journal of Biological Chemistry, Molecular & Cellular Proteomics and the Journal of Lipid Research.

Matt Thomas, director of the biotechnology program, applied for the grant after State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF) lost power for three days in the aftermath of the hurricane. While there was no major structural damage or lost equipment, the power outage caused freezer stocks to be damaged or lost as temperatures in SCF’s sole minus 80 C freezer rose to room temperature. The grant will be used to help replace cells lines and other materials used in the cell culture class. The class gives students the hands-on opportunity to learn the basics of cell culture techniques, and to become proficient in them.

For information on setting up grants and scholarships for one of SCF’s programs, contact Barbara Bourgoin at or 941-752-5398.

Swift Family Foundation Gives $7,500 for Gator Engineering Den at SCF

The Swift Family Foundation has awarded State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF) a $7,500 grant for its Gator Engineering Den at SCF Venice. The Swift Family Foundation provides grants for educational endeavors in medicine and technology areas. After a successful practice in Iowa, Dr. Frederick Swift moved to Gainesville in 1970.

SCF has been chosen by University of Florida (UF) to become one of only two extension sites in Florida for Gator Engineering.  Gator Engineering at SCF includes live-learn-work experiences, including co-ops, internships and job shadowing with local companies. The collaboration will create an innovative and technologically-ready engineering workforce available to employers in Manatee and Sarasota counties. By starting their education and internships locally, UF graduates are expected to return to embark on their careers.

UF lacks the capacity to admit all the qualified students who apply to its engineering program each year.  UF selected SCF as an extension of its program, offering a Bachelor of Science in engineering degree that allows local students to begin their coursework and then move on to the UF Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering. The Swift Family Foundation grant will support Gator Engineering and the Gator Engineering Den with technology and capital needs.

Gator Engineering and the Gator Engineering Den were established to eliminate the barrier for many Florida students, many first generation, who may not have funds or the transportation to enroll at UF as a freshman.  By creating a hub at SCF Venice, students will have an opportunity to develop plans to move to Gainesville with guidance from the onsite Gator Engineering advisor.

For information about Gator Engineering at SCF, contact Heather Shehorn at or 941-408-1416. For information on setting up grants and scholarships for one of SCF’s programs and capital campaigns, contact Barbara Bourgoin at or 941-752-5398.

SCF, Manatee-Sarasota Receives Donation for Veteran Scholarships

For the third consecutive year Venice American Legion NO-VEL Post 159 is donating the proceeds from its annual Veterans Golf Open to State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF). The money will be used to provide SCF Venice student veterans with individual $1,000 scholarships. Two scholarships are offered at the beginning of the fall and spring semesters.

The proceeds from the golf tournament were $6,500. Combined with previous donations from the Venice American Legion, the proceeds will sustain the veterans’ scholarships for more than six years. SCF Venice serves more than 100 veteran and veteran-dependent students. All together SCF serves about 300 student veterans and their dependents.

The NO-VEL Scholarship is limited strictly to veterans at SCF Venice. Anyone interested may donate to the SCF Foundation Veteran Scholarship, which is awarded to two veterans each year.

For more information, contact Allison Nash, scholarship coordinator, SCF Foundation at 941-752-5653,

Kiwanis Club of Bradenton Donates $10,000 to SCF’s New Library & Learning Center

The Bradenton Kiwanis Foundation has donated $10,000 to State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF) to create a Young Adult and Children’s Reading Room in SCF’s new Library & Learning Center. The grant will be used to purchase young adult and children’s books, portable glass writing boards, activity explorer stations and displays.

The Library & Learning Center, which will be used by both SCF and SCF Collegiate School (SCFCS) students in grades 6-12, has also been designed for community use. The Bradenton Kiwanis gift will add to the SCF library’s current collection of young adult and children’s literature, which is accessible to anyone with a Manatee or Sarasota County library card. “This gift will help enhance the Library & Learning Center’s role in educating students at SCFCS and throughout SCF’s service area,” said SCF Foundation Executive Director Cassandra Holmes.

SCF’s Library & Learning Center is scheduled to open in February. It will feature an indoor amphitheater, media production rooms, a Teaching and Visualization Theater for high-impact presentations and an SCF Fab Lab where individuals can create smart devices tailored to local or personal needs. The state has funded construction of this important community resource and the SCF Foundation has raised more than $1 million to bring the building and technology to life.

To find out how you can support your community’s new Library & Learning Center, contact Cassandra Holmes at 941-752-5389 or