Photo courtesy of Heritage Fund: The Community Foundation of Bartholomew County.
Photo courtesy of Heritage Fund: The Community Foundation of Bartholomew County.

Press Release

Heritage Fund - The Community Foundation of Bartholomew County is pleased to announce Hauser Junior-Senior High School seniors Elijah Heslop and Shelby Fugate are recipients of the 2020 Lilly Endowment Community Scholarships for Bartholomew County.

Having both scholarship winners from the same high school, is a first for Hauser.

The program - sponsored by Lilly Endowment, administered statewide by Independent Colleges of Indiana, Inc. (ICI) and locally by Heritage Fund - is in its 23rd season of awarding scholarships to Indiana students to pursue four years of undergraduate study on a full-time basis that lead to a baccalaureate degree at an accredited public or private nonprofit college or university in Indiana. Heslop and Fugate will receive full tuition for four years to the Indiana college of their choice and a $900 annual stipend for required books and equipment.

Heslop, son of Brian Heslop and Amy Wiley, has been active in FFA (district vice president, chapter chairman); Turning Point Dance Marathon (co-chairman); Students Exploring Agricultural Education (coordinator); Student Council (class representative); student ambassador; Academic Team (team captain); World Food Prize (conference attendee); Science Olympian (team captain); and Exhibit Columbus volunteer. Heslop plans to pursue a political science/psychology major.

Fugate, granddaughter of Merri Fox, has been active as a three-sport team captain (volleyball, softball, basketball); peer mentor; National Honor Society (member); Student Council (class representative; school photo editor; Feed My Starving Children; FFA; Sunshine Society; and Hawcreek-Flat Rock Area Endowment (class representative). Fugate plans to pursue a finance/accounting major.

Heritage Fund received 65 applications for this year's scholarships. Ten students were chosen for interviews by the Selection Committee. Finalists are: Allana Whiteside, Mackenzie Smith, Abigail Meier and Thomas Key from Columbus East High School; Matthew Ruehman and Kathryn Riordan from Columbus North High School; Melanie Hasler from Hauser; and Noah Voelker from Trinity Lutheran High School.

Scholarship applicants were evaluated on academic performance; scholastic activities, community involvement and employment; leadership; financial need; responses to short answer questions and a 450-word essay; and two recommendations.

The scholarships are the result of a statewide Lilly Endowment initiative to help Hoosier students reach higher levels of education. The primary purposes of the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program are

  1. to help raise the level of educational attainment in Indiana;
  2. to increase awareness of the beneficial roles Indiana community foundations can play in their communities
  3. to encourage and support the efforts of current and past Lilly Endowment Community Scholars to engage with each other and with Indiana business, governmental, educational, nonprofit and civic leaders to improve the quality of life in Indiana generally and in local communities throughout the state.

ICl is a nonprofit corporation that represents 30 regionally accredited degree granting, nonprofit, private colleges and universities in the state. Including the 23rd cohort, 4,769 full-tuition scholars have been awarded and more than $405 million in scholarship tuition has been provided through the LECSP since the program's inception in 1998.

To date, 49 Bartholomew County students have been named Lilly Endowment Community Scholars, and the endowment has awarded more than $3 million collectively to these scholars.