2024 Lilly Scholar Finalists Announced

The Putnam County Community Foundation is pleased to announce the finalists for the 2024 Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship for Putnam County. This year marks the 26th year of this program, funded by Lilly Endowment Inc. The Lilly Endowment Community Scholar will be awarded a full-tuition scholarship, including a $900 book stipend per year, for four years to any accredited school in Indiana. The winner of this prestigious award will be announced later this year.


The four finalists are: Isaac Hertenstein of Greencastle High School, son of Matt and Margo Hertenstein; Caroline Hodge of South Putnam High School, daughter of Michael and Natalie Hodge; Emily Mann of Cloverdale High School, daughter of Joe and Angela Mann; and Gabrielle Simonson of North Putnam High School, daughter of Jason and Jennifer Simonson.


These seniors were selected as finalists following an extensive review process by the Lilly Selection Committee of the Putnam County Community Foundation. The committee comprises eight voting members, two of whom reside in each of our four area school districts. The process included a blind review for the first two phases, followed by a dinner reception in which the selection committee met with eight semi-finalists. It concluded with an individual interview with each of the four finalists.


The review process is based on scholastic abilities and intellectual pursuits, capacity to lead and motivate fellow students, social commitment and extracurricular involvement, and the ability to articulate career plans that demonstrate motivation and initiative.


The Community Foundation’s nomination for the award is submitted to Independent Colleges of Indiana, Inc. (ICI) for approval of the recipient. ICI is a nonprofit corporation representing 29 regionally accredited degree-granting, nonprofit, private colleges, and universities in the state. More than 5,000 Indiana high school students have been awarded more than $486 million from a Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship since the program was started by the Lilly Endowment in 1998 including over 40 in Putnam County.


For additional information about the Putnam County Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship or other opportunities at the Putnam County Community Foundation, persons may contact Sarah Stone at sstone@pcfoundation.org or call the office at 765.653.4978.


About the Putnam County Community Foundation

The Putnam County Community Foundation (PCCF) works alongside individuals, businesses, and nonprofit organizations to build a stronger Putnam County. PCCF is home to more than 350 charitable funds and has awarded more than $21 million in grants and scholarships since its founding in 1985. To learn more about PCCF, visit www.pcfoundation.org or call 765.653.4978.

About Lilly Endowment Inc.

Lilly Endowment Inc. is an Indianapolis-based, private philanthropic foundation created in 1937 by J.K. Lilly Sr. and his sons Eli and J.K. Jr. through gifts of stock in their pharmaceutical business, Eli Lilly and Company. Although the gifts of stock remain a financial bedrock of the Endowment, it is a separate entity from the company, with a distinct governing board, staff and location. In keeping with the founders’ wishes, the Endowment supports the causes of community development, education and religion. The Endowment funds significant programs throughout the United States, especially in the field of religion. However, it maintains a special commitment to its founders’ hometown, Indianapolis, and home state, Indiana.

About Independent Colleges of Indiana

Since 1997, Independent Colleges of Indiana has administered the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program statewide with funding provided by Lilly Endowment Inc. Founded in 1948, ICI serves as the collective voice for the state’s 29 private, nonprofit colleges and universities. ICI institutions employ over 22,000 Hoosiers and generate a total local economic impact of over $5 billion annually. Students at ICI colleges have Indiana’s highest four-year, on-time graduation rates, and ICI institutions produce 30 percent of Indiana’s bachelor’s degrees while enrolling 20 percent of its undergraduates.

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