FORT MYERS -- The Real Estate Investment Society (REIS), a Southwest Florida professional organization, proudly announces that its annual scholarship has been increased to $1,000 for 2008 and the full amount awarded to both Lidia Hernandez and Charles A. Shiels. The endowed scholarship fund provided $500 and REIS contributed $1,500 to fund the awards for this year.
Lidia Hernandez, a resident of Immokalee, is a senior majoring in Marketing with a desire to achieve a master’s degree and pursue a career in marketing in the banking industry. She also has a real estate license and is employed by Hernandez Brothers, LLC, while raising her two children.
Charles A. Shiels, a resident of Naples, is a sophomore majoring in Finance at FGCU with particular interest in the real estate business. Mr. Shiels also works at Maximo’s.
REIS established the scholarship program in 1999 to benefit local students seeking business-oriented education. REIS President Steve Hartsell, Esq. announced that “This scholarship program represents REIS’s commitment to professionalism in our community. For years we have brought outstanding students to our meetings, to meet local business and civic leaders and to learn more about issues that affect economic development. We further support student interest in business by providing financial assistance for their higher education. Our goal is to promote the professionalism of our future business leaders and thereby the economic vitality of our community.”
Tom Woodyard, chairman of the REIS scholarship committee, explained that the scholarship awards are an annual event. “The program was funded initially with a $5,000 endowment from REIS, which was matched by the State of Florida’s Ethics in Business Scholarship Program. The scholarship fund is structured to continue in perpetuity. Applicants must be graduates of a Southwest Florida high school and have completed the freshman year of college. They must also be enrolled in the School of Business.” The scholarships may be awarded to multiple students each year and the funds may be used for tuition or course materials. Students interested in applying for scholarships may do so by contacting the Financial Aid and Scholarship Office (FASO) of Florida Gulf Coast University. Qualified applicants are reviewed by the university scholarship committee and the REIS Board of Governors.
“We have established a long term relationship with the University and with the students,” said Hartsell. “Scholarship recipients become honorary members of the Real Estate Investment Society and are welcome to attend our meetings, not only to recognize their achievements, but to foster relationships between business students and the business community.”
In conjunction with the scholarship, Hernandez and Shiels receive honorary membership in REIS, where they may attend meetings on a complimentary basis. “We welcome these outstanding scholars to join us, to learn about the area’s commercial real estate industry, and develop relationships with members of the business community,” explained REIS President Steve Hartsell.
Criteria, school contacts, and other information on this and other REIS scholarship programs are available at the REIS web site: www.reis-swfl.org. For further information: Tom Woodyard, (239) 425-6000.
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