Two outstanding Boys & Girls Club members were recently awarded a four-year, full-ride college scholarship to a private university in Pittsburgh thanks to Drs. Robert and Patricia Gussin. Jakobie Green and Lei'Asha Battle will join nine other Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties alumni as Drs. Robert and Patricia Gussin Endowed Scholars at Duquesne University.
Jakobie is a senior at Booker High School and a longtime member of the Roy McBean Boys & Girls Club, as well as, the Lee Wetherington Boys & Girls Club.
"Being a 2021 Gussin Endowed Scholar means more to me than receiving a full scholarship," said Jakobie. "It is the opportunity to maximize my college experience, grow as a leader and hone the skills I need to succeed in my future career."
Jakobie plans to pursue Business-Law and aspires to become a lawyer before fulfilling his long-term goal of being a judge or business executive.
Lei'Asha is a senior at Riverview High School and a proud member of the Roy McBean Boys & Girls Club. She dreams of transforming her passions into businesses, including an art gallery, and giving back to her community.
"As a first-generation college student, being a Gussin Endowed Scholar means the world to me. This opportunity gives me a chance to make my family proud," she said. "I no longer need to worry about my financial capability to get through college. My focus now is solely to obtain education and view my future with endless possibilities."
Drs. Gussin began opening the door to help thousands of local Boys & Girls Club members achieve their full potential in 2011 when Robert joined the organization's Board of Directors. Since then, Drs. Gussin have made a significant impact and supported major initiatives and programs, especially academic and literacy enrichment opportunities for youth. Drs. Gussin took their commitment to the academic success of our Club members even further in 2014, and established the Drs. Robert and Patricia Gussin Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties Endowed Scholarship at Duquesne University that provides a full-ride scholarship with educational support to at least one of our Club members each year.
"Thanks to the Gussins and our partnership with Duquesne University, these Club members were afforded an opportunity beyond their wildest dreams," said Bill Sadlo, President/CEO at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties. "This life-changing scholarship eliminates the challenges of financing higher education at a premier university."
Jakobie and Lei'Asha will begin this exciting chapter in their life through Duquesne's Robert and Patricia Gussin Spiritan Division of Academic Programs, an invitational summer course for freshman. The Division provides students with a comprehensive network of programs and services to help them develop the academic and social skills required in higher education to be successful learners within their chosen programs of study.
Watch the video below to see how Jakobie and Lei'Asha reacted when they learned they were selected for the full-ride scholarship.
Learn more about our opportunities for teens at theclubsdc.org.