Marin Young and Wesley Virt have been named recipients of four-year, full-tuition scholarships as the Hancock County Community Foundation 2013 Lilly Endowment Community Scholars. Marin and Wesley will receive full tuition to the Indiana College of their choice and a $900 yearly stipend for required books and equipment.
Marin Young, a senior at Greenfield-Central High School, is the daughter of Randy and Ginger Young. Marin shown her passion for the health care field through her countless service hours providing basic emergency medical services as a cadet for the local fire department and to children and counts her experience helping a young, adopted child with Downs Syndrome, as one that has touched her most deeply. Her desire to relieve pain is evidenced through mission work. She participated in the creation of an organization that targeted at-risk middle school students to engage them in community service. She has applied her desire to work in the field of medicine to her role as Student Athletic Trainer and through a Cardiothoracic Surgery Mentorship at St. Francis Hospital. Marin has used her scientific skills for unique research opportunities through her membership in the school’s science club. She has also been very involved and shown leadership through her participation in Student Leadership Academy, Leaders to Go, French Honor Society and National Honor Society. Marian plans to study Pre-med, Biology, and Neuroscience at an Indiana College of her choice.
Wesley Virt, a senior at New Palestine High School, is the son of Troy and Andrea Virt. Wesley has made a tremendous impact through his dedication as President of the Hancock Hope House Youth Board. He helped increase community awareness, youth have become involved in supporting the shelter’s mission, and funds have been raised as a result of his event planning. In addition to helping children with disabilities in an adaptive swim program, Wes has spent many hours as a Hancock Regional Hospital Volunteer where he created an on-line volunteer application tool. He founded the Chemistry Club, is a member of The National Honor Society, and has been a member of the New Palestine High School Swim Team for four years. In addition to his academic participation he has been active in his Church’s Youth Group Leadership Team, Bible Study and Sunday School. Wesley plans to study Biology and BioChemistry at an Indiana College of his choice.
The scholarship covers eight semesters of undergraduate study at any accredited public or private college or university in Indiana for the purpose of obtaining a baccalaureate degree. Since its inception in 1998, the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program has provided scholarships to 35 Hancock County residents.
The Hancock County Community Foundation selection committee had the very difficult task of selecting the two Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship nominees from an outstanding group of eight students (two finalists from each county school.) Once the local committee completed their evaluation of the candidates, the Community Foundation submitted the two recommended recipients and an alternate to Independent Colleges of Indiana, Inc. (ICI) for the final selection. ICI is a nonprofit corporation that represents 31 regionally accredited degree granting, nonprofit, private colleges and universities in the state.
The six remaining finalists, who will each receive a $1,000.00 scholarship from the Hancock County Community Foundation to attend any accredited Indiana college or university, are:
Corey Beck, Mt. Vernon High School
Kayleigh DeWitt, Eastern Hancock High School
Kaytlin Eastes, Eastern Hancock High School
Erin Hays, Mt. Vernon High School
Lesley Nickels, Greenfield-Central High School
Olga Vlashyn, New Palestine High School
The scholarships are the result of a statewide Lilly Endowment initiative to help Hoosier students reach higher levels of education. Indiana ranks among the lowest states in the percentage of residents over the age of 25 with a bachelor’s degree. Marin and Wesley will receive two of the 142 scholarships awarded statewide in 2013. “The Foundation recognizes the great privilege we have been given in the administration of Lilly Endowment’s incredible generosity. Each year, we evaluate our scholarship selection process and sharpen the skills of our school and Foundation selection committees to ensure the highest level of integrity and due diligence required in carrying out this awesome responsibility,” says Mary Gibble, Hancock County Community Foundation President.