The Gina Guthrie Scholarship Fund is a trust dedicated to awarding money to deserving students in the memory of Gina Guthrie. Gina Guthrie (Sulser) was a student at the University of Florida from 1988-1993 and incredibly active on campus. She was a member of the Kappa Delta sorority, a member of Cicerones, and in both the Japanese and Spanish Clubs. Gina finished college and entered the workforce eventually settling into a public relations job with Alamo Car Rental in Fort Lauderdale. It was there that she met her future husband and partner, Mike Guthrie.
Gina and Mike were married and moved to Concord, North Carolina just outside of Charlotte where they embarked on their life together. A life filled with food, fun, family, friends, and travel. Gina lived her dream life becoming a part of her local community at every level. She was active in her church, her kids' sports & activities, in community fund-raising, and eventually started her own business. Her love of food and cooking led her to open a stall at the local farmers market on weekends to sell her homemade pasta sauce, raviolis, and focaccia bread. This hobby expanded, and within a few years she was running a full-fledged catering company cooking for weddings, parties, and community events. Her passion helped to make many memorable nights for innumerable happy couples and also spurned her to teach healthy eating and living classes throughout the community.
Besides her family and cooking, Gina’s other passion was travel. From a young age she always loved to wander and explore and make new friends. She was lucky in that she was able to visit a great many places across America and the world. From New York City to Yosemite National Park, from Myrtle Beach to Venice Beach, from Washington D.C. to Seattle, from Buenos Aires to Barcelona, and from Scotland to Okinawa - Gina ventured all over the country and world seeing the sights and embracing the cultures. Her knowledge and love of foreign languages took her to Japan where she taught English and learned to live like a local. Her passion for Spanish language, history, and food took her to Spain and Argentina, where she immersed herself in Hispanic culture and customs. And, most importantly, her love of travel and her family roots took her to Italy where her family was from and where she was most happy. Gina was blessed in that she was able to see more in her 48 years than most people could see in 100.
Gina took a lot of amazing trips, but her absolute favorite was her family’s trip to Italy in the summer of 2017 - a trip that almost didn’t happen. Shortly before leaving for Italy, she was diagnosed with breast cancer, the same disease that killed her mother when she was in college. Luckily the doctors said the chemotherapy could wait a month and the trip could proceed as planned, so it was off to Italy. Surrounded there by her family and friends, she spent her days wandering the streets, seeing the sights, talking to the locals, and looking for the best bites to eat. The nights were spent enjoying Italian gastronomical treasures and drinking local wine.
After returning home Gina had a double mastectomy and began to get chemotherapy treatments. Gina had Hodgkin’s disease just after college and survived that, so she was all too familiar with the chemotherapy procedure. After her chemo treatments were done she went through one last round of radiation just to make sure the cancer wouldn’t come back. Unfortunately it did in the fall of 2018, and despite her doctors’ best efforts to cure her and Gina fighting until the end - she passed away in early 2019.
Gina is gone, but not forgotten, and we have chosen to honor her and keep her memory alive with the Gina Guthrie Scholarship Fund. We hope this will be a way to remember her and help deserving students achieve the type of life Gina was able to live.
If you are interested in donating or helping the fund reach its goals, please reach out to us and we will respond as soon as possible. Or, if you are a student and wish to know more about our scholarship availability and requirements, please send us an e-mail and we will fill you in on the process for applicants. Thanks!