scholarship spotlight: fleck cadeau – 2012-13 ella b. sadler scholarship recipient

The Ella B. Sadler scholarship is a longtime and dedicated supporter of Valencia College and our students. For the 2012-13 academic year, this scholarship fund has generously gifted 15 students scholarship funding for the fall and spring terms.

Fleck Cadeau, presently a sophomore student with Valencia College, was one of the 2012-13 Ella B. Sadler scholarship recipients. Currently, Fleck holds a 3.81 GPA and has participated in the Valencia Student Government Association, Valencia Volunteers, and was an Orlando Regional Teen Volunteer where he helped prepare meals for patients of the hospital. In addition, Fleck participated in several community service events offered by the National Honor Society and National Science Honor Society. In his free time, Fleck enjoys volunteering at local blood drives as well as Caps for Chemo, a program that teaches volunteers to knit caps for patients who have experienced hair loss due to chemotherapy treatments.

With a love for science and helping others, Fleck plans to earn his Bachelor’s degree in Biology and continue on to apply to medical school with the University of Central Florida.

I began discovering new aspects about myself at Valencia. My tremendous passion for science and medicine led me to major in the expanding filed of biology. I received a very generous gift from the Ella B. Sadler scholarship fund that allowed me to pay for my books and purchase a new laptop for school. The Ella B. Sadler fund made it possible for me to do things I would not have been able to otherwise do. In 10 years, I see myself beginning a promising career as a surgeon for one of Orlando’s amazing hospitals. I will never forget how my education began at Valencia and how the generous donation of the Valencia Foundation and Ella B. Sadler Scholarship helped enhance and motivate my journey to success.” – Fleck Cadeau

The Valencia Foundation partners with many generous donors who are excited to contribute to the education of the leaders of tomorrow. If you haven’t already, there is still time to apply by visiting: and applying for the 2012-13 Valencia Foundation Scholarship Application.

flag display to honor 9/11

Osceola Campus to Honor 9/11 Victims with Massive Flag Display

KISSIMMEE — To honor the victims of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, Valencia College’s Osceola Campus has teamed up with the Rotary Club of Lake Nona to stage a dramatic display of flags on its expansive lawn — one flag for each of the nearly 3,000 lives lost on that tragic day.

The installation of the flags in Kissimmee, which will be on display from Sept. 8 – 14, was the idea of Dr. Kathleen Plinske, president of Valencia’s Osceola and Lake Nona campuses.

Dr. Plinske taught weekend classes at Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif. last fall – and was impressed by Pepperdine’s annual memorial for Sept. 11, which is called “Waves of Flags.”

“It was that display – one flag to represent each victim of 9/11 – that helped me to get my mind around the magnitude of the tragedy,” Plinske said. “When you hear 2,977 people, it’s obviously too large of a number to fully comprehend its magnitude. But to see all of those flags, knowing that each one represents an individual who was lost and whose family and community was forever impacted, really touched me.”  She believes the memorial will be a way for current Valencia students, many of whom were only six or seven years old on Sept. 11, 2001, to learn about the events of that tragic day.  The campus will host a number of events throughout the week, including an Interfaith Panel, intended to help students learn about different religious faiths and develop a deeper appreciation for diversity, peace and acceptance.

In addition to honoring the victims of 9/11, the Osceola Campus flag display will also serve as the site for Osceola County’s Sept. 11 county-wide memorial service, which will include participants from the Osceola County’s Sheriff’s Office, Osceola County Emergency Services, Kissimmee Police and Fire Departments, St. Cloud Police and Fire Departments, and the Osceola County Veteran’s Council.  In addition, Gina Marie Incandela will perform the national anthem and the chorus from Denn John Middle School will perform “God Bless America.”

The ceremony will be held at on Sept. 11 at 1:30 p.m., near the Clock Tower at the Osceola Campus.

To install the flags, the Rotary Club of Lake Nona has assembled a community-wide team of volunteers. Between Aug. 27 and Sept. 6, volunteers – including Rotarians, cadets of the Civil Air Patrol, members of the U.S. Fire Department Reserve Corp and U.S. Navy Future Sailors program, members of the Osceola Sheriff’s Explorers, volunteers from local churches, and Valencia students, faculty, and staff – will install the 2,977 flagpoles on the campus grounds.  To install the poles, organizers anticipate that they will work seven nights in three-hour shifts.

The Rotary Club of Lake Nona secured sponsors to raise the money to buy the supplies for the flag display. The primary sponsors are Kissimmee Utility Authority (KUA) and Clancy & Theys Construction Company. Other sponsors include Hoagland Electric LLC, Insurance Office of America, Sonu Shukla, CPA, Sweetwater Car Wash, and Williams Company Management Group.

“We feel like this will serve as important recognition for our local emergency responders, as well as a way to honor those who were lost on September 11,” said Michael Valenzuela, president of the Rotary Club of Lake Nona.  “Rotary International’s theme this year is ‘Peace Through Service’ and we believe this project will build bridges of friendship and acceptance among our diverse community.”

The Rotary Club of Lake Nona has continued to raise money and has pledged that any additional funds raised will go toward a scholarship with the Valencia Foundation to help pay for continuing education for men and women who are currently police officers, firefighters and emergency medical technicians.

View the Orlando Sentinel video on the project.

5K: family of first responders encourage participants

Dear Officers, Deputies, Firefighters, Family & Friends,

Throughout the years, we have lost many Law Enforcement Officers, Deputies, and Firefighters both in the line of duty and after their service. While many of these Officers, Deputies, and Firefighters have not been acknowledged we would like to recognize these fallen heroes in the Valencia College Annual, Run Walk and Roll 5K. Not only have they protected the citizens and streets of our communities, some may have also given their lives.

This year, we would like to honor and recognize Charles “Charlie” Edwards of Orlando Police Department, ILona Edwards of Orlando Police Department, Brandon Coates of Orange County Sheriff’s Office, Michael Callin of Orange County Sheriff’s Department and Christine “Tina” Collyer Firefighter of Orlando Fire Department.

The family, friends, Brothers and Sisters of Law Enforcement would be honored to have you, as well as your family and friends, to participate in honoring these fallen heroes. The race will kick off March 31st at 6 p.m. at Valencia College West Campus! Please see Valencia 5K flyer regarding race registration, background about the fallen heroes, and race flyers. We ask of you to please print out the Valencia 5K flyer and post them around your department to help increase participation in honoring our Officers, Deputies, and Firefighters.

If you can participate, please sign up and spread the word. All of this year’s funds from Valencia’s 5K go to public safety scholarships at the college.

If you have Law Enforcement, fire and EMT contacts, please pass this on to them. We hope to have record participation this year. Also, please send throughout the department and agency for I do not have everyone’s email addresses.

Registration for the Valencia 5K is on the following web site:

The registration for the 5K is on the right side of this site. Hope to see you there.


Emily Edwards

the results are in: tina’s turnout for scholarships

Remembering Tina Collyer. At the event Fire Chief John Miller (pictured here) spoke to friends and family and honored their commitment to keeping Tina's spirit of service alive.

Tina’s Turn Out was established by friends and community members in memory and celebration of Tina Collyer’s life.  With the proceeds from the inaugural Sept. 24th walk, the Tina Collyer scholarship has reached $9,400 and is almost half way toward becoming a perpetual scholarship. 

Tina Collyer, a Valencia graduate and an Orlando firefighter, had a passion for helping young Explorers fulfill their dreams of becoming firefighters.   Once endowed, the Tina’s Heart scholarship will be earmarked for students, especially Explorers, who wish to certify as an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) at Valencia College. 

The EMT-Paramedic Program is designed for students who are interested in providing pre-hospital emergency care to acutely ill or injured patients. A stumbling block for many is the expense of completing the EMT program. 

Help us with the next steps.  Please contribute in memory of Tina Collyer and to help future EMT students.  You can contribute online at, just click on Give Now and make a donation. 

If you would prefer to mail a check, write ‘In Memory of Tina Collyer’ in the memo field, and send to: Valencia Foundation, 190 S. Orange Ave., Orlando, FL 32801.

Thank you, in advance, for your consideration.  Every gift, no matter how large or modest, will make a difference to our students.

Honoring Tina Collyer, community members create a scholarship in her honor.
Thank you to all who participated. Every gift, no matter how large or modest matters! You can still support future EMT students in memory of Tina Collyer by visiting and click on ‘Make a Donation’

More photos from this event are available on Facebook via Valencia Alumni Association or click here

remembering fallen heroes

Valencia’s Criminal Justice Institute (CJI) hosted a memorial service on April 27 to honor Orange County Deputy Brandon Lee Coates who died in the line of duty last December.

Deputy Coates attended basic recruit law enforcement training at CJI in 2006. His wife, Orange County Deputy Sheriff Virginia Coates, is also a graduate of the program.

Donna Marino, donor stewardship manager at Valencia Foundation, announced at the ceremony that a memorial scholarship fund had been established in memory of Coates. An initial gift of $500 was made by students now enrolled in the same class that Coates once was.

Numerous law enforcement officials from central Florida, along with Deputy Coates’ widow and mother, Debbie Griffin, attended the ceremony.

Inscribed in a memorial monument that stands at CJI were these words:

“This monument is dedicated to the valiant men and women that have selflessly given their lives to protect the innocent and preserve the American way of life. We honor the valor in their hearts and the fortitude they showed in the face of death. As recruits at this academy, we strive to walk the path they have laid before us. To be as brave, chivalrous, and have the same courage under pressure. We celebrate their lives, their sacrifice, and the hope they inspired in us all.”

CJI’s ceremony was the first of many local, state and national law enforcement ceremonies that occur each May to honor officers who have died in the line of duty.

To make a donation to the Brandon Lee Coates Memorial Scholarship Fund, please visit Valencia Foundation’s Web site at

Source: Marketing and Strategic Communications, Valencia Community College; Valencia News;

facc – hall of fame

Victor Collazo is serving in his 16th year as the Student Development Coordinator and Student Government Advisor at Valencia Community College West Campus. As a community college graduate (Daytona Beach) he understands the importance of co-curricular activities on the lives of students. Victor contributes to the development and education of the students through his workshops at the local, district and state wide meetings. The students know him as a presenter who will never bore them and they always leave having learned something they can use in life. Some of his workshops are: “The Leadership Secrets of Santa Claus”, “The FISH! Philosophy”, “Eat that Frog” and “The Fred Factor”.

Victor is actively involved in leadership positions at the District and State level of the Florida Junior/Community College Student Government Association and the Florida Association of Community Colleges especially the Student Development Commission. He has also served his alma mater, University of Central Florida on several alumni boards. Victor is the recipient of many special honors and achievements such as:

  • Dr. Debra Hay Distinguished Service Award for the FACC Student Development Commission
  • A scholarship has been endowed in his name through the Valencia Community College Foundation.
  • Named an Honorary member of the Chi Epsilon Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa
  • Association for the Promotion of Campus Activities Outstanding Service Award

Victor truly exemplifies a Servant Leader and is providing extraordinary leadership for the Valencia Volunteers. He is one of the first on board whenever a crisis happens, be it local or worldwide such as Hurricane Katrina and the Haitian Earthquake. “Victor has a servant’s heart from which he contributes to others every day” according to Dr. Joyce Romano, Vice President for Student Affairs at Valencia.

James “Jay” Galbraith, Vice President of State and Industry Affairs for Sea World Parks and Entertainment, discovered his passion for politics and respect for democratic engagement while earning his AA degree from Indian River Community College in 1988.

Jay’s involvement in the Campus Coalition Government as the Athletic representative caused him to change his chosen path from professional golf to politics. Once involved at the campus level, Jay quickly became involved at the District and State levels being elected the District V Coordinator and assuming his role on the Florida Junior Colleges Student Government Association (FJCSGA) State Executive Board. Jay proposed FJCSGA have a conference to deal with legislative issues. The proposal was put on the shelf for a number of years. Jay was ahead of his time in that his idea was eventually adopted by FJCCSGA (yes another C for Community was added) changing their conference format and now holds the November Presidents Assembly and Legislative Conference. Jay continues to give back to the Student Government division presenting workshops through the years. In April 2010, Jay was the keynote speaker for the “Rally in Tally”.

 After graduating from Indian River, Jay enrolled at Florida State University where he became involved in the Student Government Association and the College Republicans. While at FSU, he was involved in a number of political campaigns. After graduation from FSU, he spent time working for Congressman Michael Bilirakis of Clearwater.

 Professionally Jay has worked in government, education and for non-profit organizations. He lives in Orlando with his wife Carrie and their four children: Denny, Sara, Faith and Josiah. He continues to have the community colleges at heart serving on the Valencia Community College Foundation Board. He is actively involved in his community giving back thorough his church, the Foundation for Orange County Public Schools, Visit Florida Government Affairs Committee, and others.

Jay is a creative visionary with a heart to serve.

the godfather of Valencia

Founding UCF President Remembered

The University of Central Florida’s founding president, Dr. Charles Millican passed away today. A strong supporter of Valencia during its founding and throughout the college’s development, Valencia Community College unveiled a plaque to honor Dr. Millican and the role he played when it dedicated the joint UCF-Valencia building on its West Campus last year, named the University Center.

Valencia Community College president, Sanford Shugart, issued the following statement upon learning of the higher education leader’s death at 94:

“Charles Millican, the founding president of the University of Central Florida, in 1967 endorsed the creation of a new junior college in Orlando. He was countering initial local resistance to the notion. His support helped pave the way for Valencia’s establishment. If Dr. Millican is considered the father of UCF, he also could be considered the godfather of Valencia.”

Source: Marketing and Strategic Communications, Valencia Community College; Valencia News;