Two outstanding La Porte County students have been named recipients of full tuition, four-year scholarships as Unity Foundation of La Porte County 2015 Lilly Endowment Community Scholars.
Rebecca Yaw and Olivia Glowacki will receive tuition to the Indiana colleges of their choice, and an annual $900 stipend for required books and equipment.
Rebecca demonstrated strong time management and organizational skills by completing 39 college credits, taking five advanced placement courses and graduating with an academic honors diploma a semester early from Marquette High School, with an unweighted GPA of 3.84. Rebecca is currently enrolled in courses at Purdue North Central. Her guardians are Todd and Donna Weist, and her goal is to become a veterinarian.
While focusing her energy on academics and volunteer service, Rebecca has maintained work experience directly related to her career goals. She has worked at an animal hospital as a kennel assistant and is currently employed at a local stable as a barn/horse care attendant. In addition, Rebecca assists with clerical duties and office organization at a local child care facility. She has participated in multiple activities tied to her passion for animals, including volunteering at Michiana Humane Society, a children’s horse camp, at the La Porte County Small Animal Shelter and a pet salon.
Olivia has an unweighted GPA of 4.0 and is ranked at the top of her class of 399 at Michigan City High School. She will graduate with an academic honors diploma having taken six advanced placement and five dual credit courses. She is the daughter of Michael and Rebecca Greenlaw and plans to study elementary education and social work.
Olivia demonstrates effective leadership and team-building ability by serving as the marching band Junior and Senior Drum Major, a show choir member and an active theater participant. She has been involved in multiple clubs and academic competition activities, such as Mathletes and Quiz Bowl, and volunteers to tutor other students. Olivia also was a Hoosier Girls State delegate. Many of her work and volunteer experiences focus on children, including serving as a summer camp counselor, assisting the Lake Hills STEM Club, and acting as a preschool teacher for Dunebrook‘s Nurturing Parents programs.
Irene Rosevear, 2015 Chair of the Unity Foundation Lilly Endowment Scholarship Committee said, “The applications submitted this year, were once again, truly outstanding. The committee had an extremely difficult task in choosing from so many deserving applicants. The students from La Porte County were inspiring in their academic achievements, leadership abilities and dedication to their communities.”
Unity Foundation received 69 applications for the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship from students throughout the county. Applicants were judged on their academic achievement, service to others, extracurricular activities and, to a lesser extent, financial need. A committee comprised of La Porte County residents reviewed the applications, not knowing the applicants’ names until after the finalists were selected. The 11 finalists were then interviewed, and nominee and alternate names were submitted to the Independent Colleges of Indiana, Inc. for the final selection.
Independent Colleges of Indiana (ICI) is a nonprofit corporation that represents 31 regionally accredited degree granting, nonprofit, private colleges and universities in the state. The scholarships are the result of a statewide Lilly Endowment initiative to help Hoosier students reach higher levels of education. Indiana currently ranks among the lowest states in the percentage of residents over the age of 25 with a bachelor's degree.
Since 1992, the Unity Foundation of La Porte County has served donors, nonprofits and local communities. As La Porte County’s community foundation, it manages nearly $27 million in assets, administers more than 280 charitable funds, and has distributed approximately $12 million in La Porte County through direct grants and scholarships. The Council on Foundations has deemed Unity Foundation in compliance with all Indiana and national ethical and operating standards for community foundations.
Unity Foundation’s mission is to strengthen La Porte County now and forever by: building permanent endowments; providing leadership; offering philanthropic vehicles for everyone; and, being a catalyst for social and economic vitality. For more information, please visit www.uflc.net.