By Wendy Jo Moyer
As the assistant director of the Horizon Scholars Program, Lindsay Regruit personifies Valencia College’s value: access.
In her role, she works with 440 ninth through 12th graders who participate in the Horizon Scholars Program from across 19 Orange County high schools. The program provides low-income high school students with the opportunity to develop a meaningful relationship with a mentor and to participate in co-curricular programs that help them grow personally, professionally and academically. Upon successful completion of all program requirements, students receive a two-year Florida prepaid scholarship that helps to cover the cost of college tuition at any Florida public college or university.
“My primary responsibilities include the recruitment, matching and onboarding of Horizon Scholars mentors who work with our students,” she explained. “I also work a lot with the planning of large-scale events for our students including induction, graduation and a community mentor recruitment event called Breakfast of Champions.”
Lindsay first joined Valencia in 2016 — from a hospitality and event planning career at the Walt Disney World Resort — as a Horizon Scholars college success coordinator, where she worked directly with high school students on personal, professional and academic growth.
Lindsay believes that the foundation of a strong mentor and student relationship begins with the very first step of the matching process. She also believes that creating a network of support for students, families and mentors allows for an environment of growth and opportunity both inside and outside the Horizon Scholars Program and the village that Valencia has created.
And Lindsay has been an important part of growing that village.
“In my nearly four years here at Valencia, we have been able to grow the Horizon Scholars program from serving 100 students in Orange County to now serving 440, with a goal to serve 1,500 students by 2023,” Lindsay exclaimed.
With that growth, comes a constant need for additional mentors, and, in fact, Lindsay is seeking new mentors to match with high school students. If you’re interested in learning about the opportunity, contact her at email@example.com.
Her team colleagues know her as a matchmaker.
“Lindsay is an extraordinary member of the Horizon Scholars Program,” shared her supervisor Kelly Astro, director, Valencia Promise. “She is an expert mentor ‘matchmaker’ and has a keen eye for event planning. She is able to listen to what our mentors say, and sometimes don’t say, and match them with students who are a perfect fit. I cannot tell you the number of times mentors in our program will tell me that they are just amazed at how ideal their student match is, and when you rely solely on volunteers to do the work we do, it is critical to get it right the first time. Lindsay’s attention to detail, her dedication to the students and mentors and her compassion are what make her a true asset to the Horizons Scholars Program and to Valencia College.”
Lindsay has enjoyed her time at Valencia for its genuine sense of belonging for students, faculty and staff.
“I can get up every morning and say that I am truly excited and passionate about having the opportunity to do the work we do,” she said. “I find the warmth and true heart in everyone here to be truly inspiring. No matter the department, there is a kindness, a sense of ownership and a sense of pride in the work being done here.”
Lindsay holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Management from Western New England University. She recently completed her two-year term with the Orlando Economic Partnership Young Professional Advisory Council, which works with community leaders to advocate for the Central Florida region to see talent retention, economic growth, broad-based prosperity and a sustainable quality of life.
In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family and her dog doing pretty much anything outside in the fresh air.
Know of someone who embodies one of Valencia’s Values (learning, people, diversity, access or integrity), who has been an employee for one year or more? Send the colleague’s name to us at The_Grove@valenciacollege.edu. He or she might be one of our featured colleagues, subject to supervisor’s approval.