Three floral industry members won $1,000 scholarships from FTD University to attend SAF Palm Springs 2018, the Society of American Florists’ 134th annual convention in Rancho Mirage, California. Carly Anechiarico of Blossom Flower Shops in Yonkers, New York, Rebekah Casey of Ballard Blossom in Seattle, Washington, and Becky Rathbone of Rathbone’s Flair Flowers in Jenks, Oklahoma earned the opportunity to attend the event.
“Receiving this scholarship is really important for me because it is good to open our eyes and see what other people are doing in the industry,” said Casey. “I’m excited to meet with people, connect, and compare notes, and I’m looking forward to seeing what’s new and what people are talking about for design and business trends.”
“We’re proud to invest in opportunities that help our member florists learn and grow,” said Tom Moeller, executive vice president of FTD’s Florist division. “These scholarships are just one way that FTD is building valuable relationships with the world’s best florists and helping them take their businesses further.”
In addition to the SAF convention scholarships, FTD awarded three scholarships for the AIFD Symposium, which takes place next month in Washington, D.C., and 13 scholarships for florists to attend FTD’s Boot camp. (Read the full list of scholarship winners.)
All three scholarship winners for SAF Palm Springs 2017 said that they are excited to learn design techniques from experienced designers presenting at the convention, along with the opportunity to pick up inspiration at sessions such as “Hands On Workshop: Holiday Designs” with speaker Kevin Ylvisaker, AIFD, PFCI, CAFA, Smithers-Oasis.
“It’s important to try to look for new ideas and find out what’s going in the rest of the floral world,” said Rathbone. “I’m always trying to improve because you lose ground doing the same thing. This [convention] is a boost, a ‘while I’m going to the market, I’ll go to the fountain and get a drink’ scenario, leaving more revived and refreshed.”