Riley Ash Awarded the 2023 Starke County Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship

Riley Ash Awarded the 2023 Starke County Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship

The Starke County Community Foundation, fund affiliate of the Northern Indiana Community Foundation (NICF), is pleased to announce the recipient of the 2023 Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship for Starke County – Riley Ash of Oregon-Davis High School. Lilly Endowment Community Scholars are known for their community involvement, academic achievement, character, and leadership.

Riley is the daughter of Bianca and James Ash and plans to study Mathematics Secondary Education at Grace College after graduating from Oregon-Davis High School. She’s involved in soccer, golf, FFA, Drama Club, Swim Team, and several other activities in which she has received a multitude of honors and awards. Throughout Riley’s high school years, she’s spent many hours volunteering with her church and with the Maxinkuckee Players

“Riley is really a great student, who really cares for her community,” said Shannon Berger, NICF Scholarship Coordinator. “I have no doubt that she will change the world for the better.”

Each Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship provides for full tuition, required fees and a special allocation of up to $900 per year for required books and required equipment for four years. The scholarship is for undergraduate students studying on a full-time basis leading to a baccalaureate degree at any eligible Indiana public or private nonprofit college or university. Lilly Endowment Community Scholars may also participate in the Lilly Scholars Network (LSN), which connects both current scholars and alumni with resources and opportunities to be active leaders on their campuses and in their communities. Both the scholarship program and LSN are supported by grants from Lilly Endowment to Independent Colleges of Indiana (ICI) and Indiana Humanities.

In determining Starke County’s Lilly Endowment Community Scholar(s), the committee assesses a multitude of criteria, including high academic performance and community involvement. After the field of applicants was narrowed down, nominees were submitted to ICI, the statewide administrator of the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program, which approves the final selection of scholarship recipients.

“Id like to congratulate Riley and extend my gratitude to the Lilly Endowment for funding this scholarship each year,” said Starke County Community Foundation (SCCF) Director of Development Jacque Ryan. “The Lilly Endowment is how the SCCF and many other community foundations got started back in the 90s so it’s inspiring to see them still investing in our communities decades later.”

Lilly Endowment created the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program for the 1998-99 school year and has supported the program every year since with grants totaling in excess of $486 million. More than 5,000 Indiana students have received the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship since the program’s inception.

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; and 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.

The 2023 Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship finalists include Olivia Burkett, Addison Eskridge, and Kennedy Baxter, who will receive $1,000 scholarships from the Starke County Community Foundation.