Categories: Press Releases



Unity Foundation Announces 2021 Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Finalists

LA PORTE COUNTY, IN — Unity Foundation of La Porte County congratulates twelve local high school seniors as La Porte
County finalists for the prestigious Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship. Two students from La Porte County will be
selected as 2021 Lilly Endowment Community Scholars. They will receive a full-tuition scholarship to pursue a
baccalaureate degree at any accredited public or private Indiana college or university and an annual $900 book stipend.
The Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program has provided nearly $5,500,000 in tuition and book stipends to 62
La Porte County students through this program.

“Unity’s review committee noted the high quality and extraordinary achievements of La Porte County’s 2021 Lilly
Endowment Community Scholarship finalists,” said Shannon Walker, Unity Foundation Vice President.

The 2021 scholarship finalists and their respective schools are:

 Michigan City High School: Michael Lakin
 New Prairie High School: Blake Kessler
 New Prairie High School: Olivia Schroeder
 South Central High School: Adelaide Young Brust
 South Central High School: Gabrielle Kimmel
 Westville High School: Trevor Henckel
 La Crosse High School: Emily Pontbriand
 La Porte High School: Alexander Ake
 La Porte High School: Jillian Maudlin
 La Porte High School: Sophie Sorg
 La Porte High School: Riya Verma
 Michigan City High School: Reese Attar

Applicants were judged on their academic achievement, service to others, extracurricular activities and, to a lesser extent,
financial need. A committee of local volunteers reviewed the applications, not knowing the applicants’ names until after
the finalists were selected. The twelve finalists are then interviewed, and nominee and alternate names will be submitted
to the Independent Colleges of Indiana, Inc., the statewide administrator of the program, for the final selection – which
will be announced by the end of December 2020.

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 Unity Foundation elects to participate in this program provided by Indianapolis-based Lilly Endowment Inc. through
ICI. Maggi Spartz, Unity Foundation President, said, “Unity’s screening process is among the most intensive of
participating community foundations. This is one of many ways Unity ‘invests in our people.’ We are delighted when we
see them succeed and give back to their communities.”

Since 1992, Unity Foundation of La Porte County has served donors, nonprofits and local communities. As La Porte
County’s community foundation, it manages approximately $32 million in assets, administers more than 325 charitable
funds, and has distributed more than $21 million 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 or call 219-879-0327.

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