Published: Apr 07, 2011 6:14 PM EDT
Updated: Apr 07, 2011 3:14 PM EDT

TALLAHASSEE, Fla - Chancellor of the Florida College System Dr. Will Holcombe today kicked off Florida College System Month during an event honoring the 2011 Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) All-Florida Academic Team and this year’s Coca-Cola Scholars.

The 2011 academic team consists of 109 outstanding students representing Florida’s 28 state and community colleges, and one independent university. Seventeen of the members are also recipients of the Coca-Cola Scholars Awards.

“The Phi Theta Kappa All-Florida Academic Team represents the best of The Florida College System, and these talented students are committed both in the classroom and in their communities,” said Chancellor Holcombe. “We are very proud of their accomplishments and thankful to PTK and Coca-Cola for this chance to highlight their abilities.”

The students were recognized during an awards ceremony held at Florida State University’s University Center Club. As part of the awards ceremony, team members were presented with Phi Theta Kappa and Coca-Cola Scholars medallions and certificates.

During the event, The New Century Scholar Spenser Reed from St. Petersburg College was also recognized. The top-scoring student from each of the 50 states is named a New Century Scholar and receives a $2,000 stipend. Among other accomplishments, Spenser wrote an article that investigates the role of activated microglia and immune cells in the progression of HIV-associated dementia which was published in the Jan. 11 issue of Molecular Neurodegeneration.

All of the winners may apply for exclusive transfer scholarships through Phi Theta Kappa that are offered by more than 680 senior institutions and total more than $36 million.

The All-Florida Academic Team is composed of students who were nominated by their respective colleges to the All-USA Academic Team competition sponsored by the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation, the Association of Florida Colleges, the Florida College System Foundation, Phi Theta Kappa, the International Honor Society for two-year colleges and USA Today. Students named to the All-Florida Academic Team are chosen based on their exceptional academic achievement, leadership and community service.

The Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation supports more than 1,400 college students each year, with annual scholarships of $3.4 million through two nationally-recognized programs on behalf of the Coca-Cola System.

For a complete list of the 2011 Phi Theta Kappa All-Florida Academic Team, visit http://www.fldoe.org/CC/Students/PTK_team/Newsletter/voltwo.asp.

To learn more about the Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society, visit: http://www.ptk.org/.

To learn more about the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation, visit: https://www.coca-colascholars.org/cokeWeb/index.jsp?navigation=1.