Hendricks County Community Foundation Announces 2024 Lilly Endowment Community Scholars

The Hendricks County Community Foundation is excited to announce the recipients of the 2024 Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship:

  • Tiba Altower, Plainfield High School
  • Aahan Bajpai, Brownsburg High School
  • Haydan Gabbard, Cascade High School

Tiba Altower is the daughter of Alhadi Altower and Amna Omar. She is the Student Body President, Co-editor-in-chief of the school newspaper, and Co-president of the Muslim Student Association. Tiba enjoys literature and mathematics, and she plans to study computer science and journalism in college. She also hopes to give back to the community through volunteering and involvement, both during and after university.  

Aahan Bajpai

Aahan Bajpai is the son of Piyush and Kashish Bajpai. He is the president of Brownsburg High School’s National Honor Society and HOSA chapters, a Scout, and part of the Speech and Debate team. Aahan hopes to attend Purdue University or the University of Notre Dame to study biology as a pre-medical student. He aspires to open his own clinic in the future, allowing him to give back to the community that shaped him. 

Haydan Gabbard

Haydan Gabbard is the daughter of Jason and Isabella Gabbard, and is a class officer at Cascade High School. She just ended her final varsity golf season and will be starting her 15th year of recreational league softball. Additionally, she has a keen interest in both local and national politics and had the opportunity to represent Hendricks County at the ALA Hoosier Girl State Program this past summer. Haydan is looking forward to studying secondary education with a special interest in Spanish and Political Science at Butler University this fall.

The Hendricks County Community Foundation received more than 400 scholarship applications from Hendricks County students. After the applications were reviewed, ten students were chosen to be interviewed. Finalists included:

  • Eyob Asfaha, Brownsburg High School
  • Bayleigh Cottrell, Cardinal Ritter High School
  • Kirandeep Kaur, Avon High School
  • London Moore, Cascade High School
  • Mason Munn, Avon High School
  • Mariam Olagunju, Avon High School
  • Ahtziri Pelayo-Pelayo, Avon High School

Lilly Endowment Community Scholars are known for their community involvement, academic achievement, character, and leadership. 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 full-time undergraduate students 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.

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 $505 million. More than 5,200 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 Mission of the Hendricks County Community Foundation: To be a trusted community partner in understanding needs, aligning resources, and empowering people to address today’s priorities and create lasting impact. Our vision is Hendricks County as a place where everyone has the opportunity to have a fulfilling life and the tools they need to build a stronger future together. The Community Foundation manages assets of over $20 million in a collection of funds created by individuals, families, businesses and organizations for charitable purposes. In 2023, the Community Foundation gave over $1.7M in grants to charitable organizations and scholarships to local students. For more information, call 317-268-6240 or visit www.hendrickscountycf.org

Lilly Endowment Inc. is an Indianapolis-based private 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. Although the Endowment funds programs throughout the United States, especially in the field of religion, it maintains a special commitment to its founders’ hometown, Indianapolis, and home state, Indiana.

Since 1997, Independent Colleges of Indianahas administered the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program statewide with funding provided by Lilly Endowment. 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. 

About Brian Scott

I play on the radio from 7 am -1 pm weekdays on 98.9 WYRZ and WYRZ.org. Follow me on twitter @WYRZBrianScott or e-mail me at brian@wyrz.org.

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