Program Information

Local Scholarships

The Greater Naples AAUW Charitable Foundation, Inc. administers several scholarship funds that award tuition assistance to local women who meet the eligibility criteria described below, as determined by the Foundation’s Scholarship Committee.
Applications become available on the Local Scholarship page of this website in January for awards normally made in April.

Eligibility Criteria for All Scholarship Funds. The following criteria apply to all scholarship funds administered by the Foundation. Each applicant must:

  • Be a resident of Collier County or southern Lee County, Florida;
  • Participate in an interview with the Foundation’s Scholarship Committee;
  • Provide a minimum of two acceptable letters of recommendation; and
  • Submit a completed application and the required references and essay by the specified deadline.

Previous applicants and awardees may re-apply for all scholarship funds.

Additional Eligibility Criteria for Specific Scholarship Funds. The following additional criteria apply to the specific scholarship funds administered by the Foundation:

Local Scholarship Fund. Scholarships normally are awarded annually from the Local Scholarship Fund. In addition to meeting the eligibility criteria for all scholarship funds, described above, each applicant must:

  • Be at least 21 years old;
  • Be currently accepted to or enrolled in a program of study at an accredited college or university, and pursuing an Associate’s, Bachelors’, or Masters’ degree;
  • Demonstrate a satisfactory academic record with a grade point average of 3.0 or higher;
  • Demonstrate a need for financial assistance; and
  • Submit an essay addressing why she has decided to pursue a career in her chosen field, which essay may be shared with donors.

The Blanche and John Rebar Scholarship Fund. The Blanche and John Rebar Scholarship Fund honors the memory of Blanche Rebar, a longtime and dedicated member of AAUW and of the AAUW Greater Naples Branch, and John Rebar, her husband, who supported her and AAUW’s mission of promoting equity for women and girls. The Blanche and John Rebar Scholarship Fund awards scholarships in odd-numbered years. In addition to meeting the eligibility criteria for all scholarship funds, described above, each applicant must:

  • Be a graduating high school senior or an older student;
  • Be currently accepted to or enrolled at an accredited four-year college or university;
  • Be pursuing or intending to obtain a Bachelors’ or Masters’ degree in one of the STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) disciplines;
  • Have a grade point average of 3.5 or higher; and
  • Submit an essay addressing why she has decided to pursue a career in her chosen STEM field, which essay may be shared with the Fund’s founding donors and other donors.

The Laura A. Candris Scholarship Fund. The Laura A. Candris Scholarship Fund awards scholarships in even-numbered years. Each applicant must meet all of the eligibility criteria applicable to The Blanche and John Rebar Scholarship Fund, described above.

For additional information about scholarships, you may contact the Chair of the Scholarship Committee Jeannine Stetson Hagedorn at 239-961-3481 or

Reading is Fun
Reading is Fun is a program that works to build a child’s interest in reading. This program entails a presentation to the children and distribution of books at Collier County Public Schools where a large percentage of each student body is on the subsidized lunch program.  Most of the children do not have books in their homes. Books are distributed by AAUW volunteers to children ages pre-K through 5th grade. The program is unique in that the children choose their own book from dozens, if not hundreds, of titles.

AAUW StartSmart/AAUW WorkSmart
StartSmart/WorkSmart are workshop programs designed to help close the gender wage gap by providing undergraduates and women already in the workplace with skills to negotiate their salary and benefits package.  Branch members are trained by AAUW to facilitate the workshops and serve to both organize and conduct them.

Women in our country continue to earn an average of 82 cents on the dollar earned by white males. Click on the link to listen to a recorded discussion of this dilemma with Dr. Sandra Pavelka of Florida Gulf Coast University and Kelly Lyons Davis, Esq., of Quarles and Brady’s Naples, Florida office.  The discussion was moderated by Catherine Hackney, Branch member and Foundation president. This webinar was presented by the Greater Naples AAUW Charitable Foundation, Inc. on November 10, 2020
Webinar: Why does the Gender Pay Gap Persist

23rd Annual STEAM Girls Count Conference a Success; The 24th Annual Program is going Full STEAM Ahead Despite the Pandemic!

The 23rd Annual AAUW Greater Naples Branch Invitational STEAM Girls Count Conference was held February 1, 2020 at Golden Gate High School, in conjunction with the Collier County Public Schools’ STEAM Expo. More than twenty professionals and STEAM specialists shared their enthusiasm and expertise with 90 fifth-grade girls from (“CCPS”) along with their families who attended the Conference despite the rain.  We were disappointed that we were unable to serve more girls this year but plan to serve 150 fifth-grade girls in CCPS schools via our 2021 STEAM in a Box Program.   Congratulations to Chair Nancy Beights, Vice Chair Cathy Hackney and the entire STEAM Conference team for the successful 2020 program!

The 2021 Steam in a Box program will offer 150 fifth-grade girls in Collier County Public Schools STEM project kits to complete at home, the book, Girls Think of Everything, written and signed by Kathleen Thimmesh, about women scientists and inventors, and links to videos of local women in STEAM careers. Many thanks to Charmaine Klein, who is Chairing the 24th annual STEAM program, and the whole committee!

We look forward to resuming our live STEAM Girls Count Conference with hands-on workshops for the girls in 2022.

Questions and Answers Concerning STEAM Girls Count Conferences

How are the girls assigned to sessions?
There are multiple girls’ sessions that introduce careers in science, technology, engineering, art, and math. Girls indicate choices on their registration forms. Groups are formed to include at least one of those “first choices.”

Must a parent, guardian, or other adult attend the conference with the girls?
Yes, each girl must have a parent, guardian or other adult attend.   We encourage dialogue between the girls and adults following the conference, and those discussions are much richer when the adults have attended.

What will the parents/guardians do while girls are in their sessions?
The adults attend the opening session in the auditorium, then additional sessions designed to help parents/guardians support girls as they move through middle and high school years. They will also enjoy the keynote speaker.

What should the girls bring to the conference?
Girls should bring their curiosity, their ideas and their questions to share with new friends. It’s also a good idea to bring a sweater! All other materials are provided.

Are teachers invited to attend the conference?
Teachers are invited at no cost to attend the Conference and may register by submitting their names on their students’ registration forms.

What are the times?
The Conference begins early in the morning and ends early to mid-afternoon, with snacks provided. Specific times and location will be provided closer to the Conference date.

What feedback have you received about the conference?
During the day, girls are asked to comment on the sessions they attend. At the end of the day, girls and adults are asked to complete a feedback form that is used to assess and design upcoming Conferences. The input is truly appreciated and utilized. Some comments from the past include:

From girls:

“I am going to share everything I learned today with my friends. Thank you, thank you, thank you for letting me come!”

“Sciene is fun!”

“It was an amazing experience.”

“Girls can be anything they want to be!”

“Working with STEAM women from our community inspired me by teaching me that I can be or do anything with my life.”

From adults:

“The resources that were shared are very helpful. I now know there are lots of opportunities for my daughter that I wasn’t aware of before.”

“I got a bit more insight into the mind of the adolescent girl. Thanks for the helpful tips. I know my daughter CAN reach for the moon!”

We look forward to welcoming 100+ more girls and their parents/guardians this February!

Click here to contact

2020 Membership application


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