Donation to help Ukrainian hospitality students at USF Sarasota-Manatee campus

Designing Women Boutique providing $2,500 in scholarship funds

This is a banner on the website of the Designing Women Boutique in Sarasota.

A donation from a Sarasota nonprofit organization, Designing Women Boutique, will benefit two Ukrainian students in the School of Hospitality and Tourism Management at the University of South Florida (USF) Sarasota-Manatee campus, the university has announced.

Designing Women Boutique receives donations of high-end clothing, furniture and other items and then sells them from a storefront in Sarasota, a news release explains. A portion of the proceeds is donated to various other nonprofit organizations, the release adds. Among past beneficiaries have been WUSF and the USF Sarasota-Manatee’s Chancellor’s Fund, the release notes.

“We are honored to be included among the organizations receiving support from Designing Women Boutique,” said Karen Holbrook, regional chancellor for the USF Sarasota-Manatee campus, in the release. “All the organizations are doing great work for the betterment of our community.”

“Designing Women Boutique’s recent donation of $2,500 in scholarships to the USF Sarasota-Manatee campus will help cover academic expenses for Halyna Horpynich and Melissa Korolchuk, two students from Ukraine who fled their country because of the war,” the release points out. “They will enroll this fall in the graduate program at the School of Hospitality and Tourism Management,” said Dean Cihan Cobanoglu in the release.

“We are extremely pleased with the generosity of Designing Women Boutique,” Cobanoglu added in the release. “The School of Hospitality is here to create a talent pipeline for our local businesses in Sarasota-Manatee and Tampa Bay areas. To receive support from a local organization such as Designing Women Boutique is so meaningful as it allows us to bring support back to the local area. It is a full circle.”

Ida Zito, president of Designing Women Boutique, recently presented the donation for the hospitality students to Holbrook and Marrie Neumer, associate vice president of university advancement at the USF Sarasota-Manatee campus, the release continues.

The donation came after Zito, in March, attended HospitaBull, a fundraising dinner for the program, the release notes. Zito came away impressed by the hospitality students who prepared and presented the meals, she said in the release, “as I observed their enthusiasm and their appreciation for opportunities that will benefit their career advancement.”