On October 24, 150 cowboys and cowgirls attended a hoedown at The Club Pelican Bay to benefit student scholarships at Hodges University. The hoedown queen, Thelma Hodges, and hoedown darling, Sandra Lee Buxton, greeted guests upon arrival.
Collier County Sheriff Kevin Rambosk and his wife, Pat, were present and unofficially deputized Stock Development guests as the major sponsor for the event. The sheriff also swore in Gates Construction guests as the Posse Sponsor.
Phil Memoli, Hodges University vice president and the event drover, conveyed the university’s gratitude to LeeSar, the Chuck Wagon Sponsor, and Florida Community Bank, the Saloon Sponsor.
It wouldn’t be a hoedown without entertainment, which was provided by Cahlua and Cream and made possible by the generosity of John C. and Bunny Brooks, Brooks Insurance Services, LLC. The evening was topped off by a wonderful dessert display sponsored by Samantha Hersch, Seniors Blue Book.
Distinguished members of the Hodges University Board of Trustees attending included Chairman John Agnelli with his wife, Diane, and Todd Gates with his wife, Angela.
Hodges Past Humanitarian of the Year Award recipient and benefactor of the Nichols School of Professional Studies, Jerry Nichols and his guest Susan were also present for the festivities.
Special recognition was given to April May, University Advancement Department Manager, and Professor Ali Wolf for planning and considering every event detail. Supporting the event was a host of Hodges University employees who assisted with registration, selling raffle tickets and attending to guests.
A highlight of the evening was a raffle drawing for a one-week stay at an historic 90-acre working ranch in the heart of the Canadian Rockies donated by Hodges University benefactor, Jason Trochessette. The lucky raffle winners were Sarah Short and Noah Lamb.
Hodges President’s Council member and supporter Howard Isaacson introduced two Hodges University students, Sheronia Garcia and Andrea Lynn Biggs, who related the challenges they have encountered and the adversities they face on their personal paths to becoming the first in their families to earn a college degree.These students and many others benefit from generosity that was demonstrated by the guests who made donations to support the Hodges University Thelma Hodges Friends of the University Scholarship Fund.
Hodges University, a private, non-profit institution of higher learning, is celebrating its 25th anniversary of contributing to the richness of Southwest Florida and provided a diverse learning environment to many. Though serving students of all ages, Hodges University has garnered recognition for developing a curriculum that is uniquely catered to adults who balance their academic obligations while maintaining full-time jobs and family responsibilities. The university offers flexible schedules of day, evening, weekend and online classes; competencybased, self-paced degree options; career counseling; and hands-on support from a highly qualified faculty. All of these factors culminate to produce a learning environment unlike any other institution in the region.