Since 2004, Club Z! has awarded more than $250,000 to deserving students in grades 5 – 12 through its Annual Achievement Award. This scholarship is funded in partnership between the Club Z! corporate headquarters and its network of 450+ franchisees throughout North America, and generally awards $25,000 or more each year through its fall and spring award periods. The Annual Achievement Award is unique in its design, which is to honor students for outstanding achievement, not just academically but also those who display strong character, achieve personal growth, demonstrate leadership in and out of the classroom, and face adversity with grace and perseverance. Now in it’s 14th year of administration, the Annual Achievement Award proudly gave top honors this past spring to students across North America, from Boca Raton to Toronto.
To be considered for the Annual Achievement Award, students must be nominated by their classroom teachers or coaches. The award applications are collected and reviewed at the Club Z! headquarters in Tampa, FL in the fall and spring. Each year, as the panel of judges reads the Annual Achievement Award submissions, they are overcome with the level of determination, hard work, and laser-like focus these student applicants show. As Amanda LeBleu, Club Z!’s Director of Franchise Support stated, “it’s always such an emotional process to go through the hundreds of applications we receive each semester. Narrowing the applicants down to our Grand Prize, Runner Up, and Honorable Mention recipients is no easy task. But we thoroughly enjoy getting a glimpse into the lives of these students, and helping to celebrate their accomplishments in some small way.”
In May 2017, the recipient of the Annual Achievement Award Grand Prize was Maria Linhan , senior at Bishop Chatard High School in Indianapolis, IN. Maria plans to attend Hope College in Holland, Michigan this coming fall, and pursue a degree in Social Work. Local Indianapolis Club Z! franchise owner, Maggie Schilling [pictured at right: second from the left, with Linehan in front] was thrilled to be able to present the award to this talented student at a school, saying “Maria is a very sweet, hard working and deserving student!”
The spring 2017 Runner Up recipient was Evan Casalino, junior at Northern Highlands Regional High School in Allendale, NJ. Christine Ross, owner/Area Director of the Club Z! office in Bergen County, NJ presented Evan with a check for $1,000 to recognize his outstanding achievements [pictured at left]. Ross enjoyed meeting with Evan and his grandparents, who were all thrilled to receive the funds for school.
In addition to the Annual Achievement Award funding that is provided by the Club Z! corporate office, Club Z!’s franchised offices also fund local awards to ensure that there is a greater opportunity to recognize these deserving students. One student recipient of a local Annual Achievement Award scholarship wrote this thank you note to the Club Z! franchise owner in Manchester, NH, “I am a Manchester Central High School graduate and the recipient of the $100 Annual Achievement scholarship from Club Z. Thank you, Mrs. Lisa Becotte for considering me for the scholarship. I am very humbled to be the recipient. The money will be respectively used to offset college expenses.”
Club Z! pledges to continue the Annual Achievement Award tradition this fall, with the award opening August 1, 2017 and closing November 30, 2017. The fall award announcements will be made during the first week of December 2017. To obtain an Annual Achievement Award application, visit https://clubzaward.com.