An integral part of the mission of the Marco Island Shell Club, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, is to "promote the study, conservation, science, history and appreciation of seashells and mollusks in all their forms..."  The Club depends upon the proceeds from the holiday sale in late fall and the annual Shell Show in March to underwrite scholarships and grants.

The Club has two endowed scholarships at Florida Gulf Coast University which continue to provide, each year, one undergraduate research scholarship and one graduate competitive research scholarship to students majoring in marine or environmental science. Based on income from its 2018-2019 season, the club is supporting a doctoral candidate at Florida International University, who is  using Rookery Bay as one of her sources of data. Club members are pleased and proud that their efforts enable the club to support such outstanding young adults who will hopefully be our future researchers, teachers, and scientists. 

Other donations made possible by members' fundraising efforts in the 2018-2019 season are:

  • The club will continue to support educational efforts at Rookery Bay with two grants, one of which will significantly underwrite bus transportation costs for National Estuaries Day in late September. Visitors board Rookery boats staffed with knowledgeable tour guides, to experience, some for the first time, a ride in Rookery Bay to see all the flora and fauna.  The second grant will provide assistance in updating and completing the outdoor classroom at Shell Island Road which hundreds of students in Collier County will use.
  • The club is also underwriting the cost of visits of the “Mollusks on the Move" program to schools on Marco Island and Collier County.  This program is an interactive STEM presentation experience, during which LIVE mollusks and tanks are brought to the classroom by a Bailey-Matthews Shell Museum staff member. Program subject matter aligns with the Sunshine State Next Generation Science Standards.
  • The club is donating iPads and scientific equipment and supplies to a 5th grade elementary teacher's classroom 

The commitment and talent of our members/volunteers and the continuing support of the community for the Club's fund-raising activities makes all these donations possible.

You can also help directly by making a donation.


Florida Gulf Coast University students who are interested in applying for the club's endowment scholarships should contact the Office of University Advancement for requirements.

Other interested individuals should email the club at:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or mail proposals to:

Marco Island Shell Club Scholarship/Grants Chair

P. O. Box 633

Marco Island, FL 34146