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Project Scholars is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization in Clermont, Florida, whose mission is to "Nurture Dreams through Education." Project Scholars each spring awards four-year scholarships, worth $10,000 each, to four deserving south Lake County students. The organization is overseen by a volunteer board of directors made up of leaders from the South Lake community. The organization also includes volunteer opportunities to serve on the Scholarship Committee and to help at the annual Pig on the Pond Community Festival that funds our scholarships.


Project Scholars each spring awards four-year scholarships, worth up to $10,000 each, to four deserving south Lake County students. One of the scholarships is earmarked for students who plan to start their college journey at Valencia College. The other three are eligible for any college, university or certified technical-training program.

One of the four scholarships is titled the Cheryl Fishel Memorial Scholarship to honor a beloved, longtime Pig on the Pond Festival event manager. This scholarship additionally recognizes the student with the most community service.

The scholarship application period is open between December 1 and March 1. Graduating seniors, who live within the boundaries of East Ridge High, Lake Minneola High and South Lake High can apply through the scholarship portal managed by the Community Foundation of South Lake. 

applications closed until

december 1, 2022

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Oct. 14-16, 2022

Project Scholar's signature event and major scholarship fundraiser is Pig on the Pond Community Festival, which has been bringing fun to the South Lake community since 1998. The three-day, family-friendly event features a carnival, BBQ contests, live entertainment, a Kids Zone, fireworks and more. Local nonprofit organizations also participate in the festival as a means to conduct fundraising for educational purposes.

More at



  • $400,000 +

  • more than 300 students

Eligibility Requirements

Students must reside in south Lake County, as determined by the Lake County School Board's boundaries for East Ridge High, Lake Minneola High and South Lake High, for at least one year, regardless of whether they attend these schools or other schools.

Applicants must have an unweighted GPA of 2.5 or higher and demonstrate a need for financial assistance.

All eligible applicants are forwarded to Project Scholars, where the Board directs its Scholarship Committee to evaluate applicants in a two-part process:

  • A committee of volunteer community leaders review the applications, scoring the applications based on how well they meet the criteria.

  • A second, separate panel interviews the top applicants. Those scores are added to the first set of scores to select the top four students who receive the $10,000 scholarships.

Project Scholars' scholarships may be used at any accredited four-year college or university as well as at any accredited community college or vocational-technical school.

Congratulations to our 2021
Scholarship Recipients
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Pictured above, the 2021 scholarship recipients at their senior awards ceremonies. Top left, left to right: Stephanie Henry, a member of the scholarship committee, presenting to Matthew Santiago, Adreanna Wasden-Bates and Charita Budram, who is standing to the left of Paul Rountree, president of Project Scholars' Board of Directors.

Top right: Nancy Srodes, scholarship committee chair, presents the scholarship award to Logan Haskins.

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