Archive for April, 2013


Six exceptional Lake County students have been named recipients of four-year, full-tuition scholarships as the Legacy Foundation 2013 Lilly Endowment Community Scholars.

(As pictured) Haley Johnson, daughter of Shannan Kuesis; Jazzlynn Baines, daughter of Evelyn Baines; Katelyn Goodrich, daughter of David and Jacqueline Goodrich; Austin Brown, son of James and Diane Brown; Brianna Scivinsky, daughter of Joseph and Carol Scivinsky; and Maya Briseno Portillo, daughter of Olga Briseno, will each receive full tuition to the Indiana college or university of his or her choice and a $900 yearly stipend for required books and equipment.

“The Lilly Endowment Scholarship has provided me with many wonderful opportunities,” said Brianna Scivinsky of Whiting High School. “This scholarship has given me so much more than a college education. It has given me the opportunity to change numerous lives within my community.”

Scivinsky plans to attend Saint Mary’s College, Notre Dame, where she will study biology. Her goal is to attend medical school and specialize in hematology.

Haley Johnson of Calumet High School also has dreams of pursuing a career in medicine and giving back to her community. Johnson’s goal is to become a nurse practitioner. She will attend Purdue University Calumet in the fall.

Maya Briseno Portillo of Munster High School said her college dreams have become a reality thanks to her supportive family and the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship. Briseno Portillo will attend Indiana University and pursue a double major in public policy and international relations. She also plans to minor in Spanish.

“To me, the Lilly Endowment Scholarship means less worry and a better opportunity to be successful in life,” said Jazzlynn Baines of Hammond High School.

In high school, Baines enjoys playing softball and volleyball. She chose to attend Purdue University, where she hopes to study engineering.

Griffith High School student, Austin Brown, also said the award would allow him to earn a degree without the burden of student loan debt after college.

Brown will attend Wabash College. He enjoys playing team sports and said his favorite activities are football, baseball and basketball.

Katelyn Goodrich, who is the 2013 Class Secretary at Gavit High School said, “The Lilly Endowment Scholarship represents community and activism.” In the future, Goodrich hopes to become a political journalist, focusing on fraud and corruption investigations. She will attend Butler University.

All Lake County high schools were invited to submit an applicant for the scholarship. A total of 228 students from 24 high schools applied for the 2013 awards. Those students nominated by their high schools were evaluated based on academic performance, leadership skills, service to others, character, a written narrative, demonstrated financial need and an interview.

Then Legacy Foundation’s scholarship committee interviews the nominees and selects six students as recipients of the awards. Then the names were submitted to Independent Colleges of Indiana for final approval. ICI is a nonprofit corporation that represents 31 regionally accredited degree-granting, nonprofit, private colleges and universities in the state and administers the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship program for Indiana’s 92 counties.

The scholarships are the result of a statewide Lilly Endowment initiative to help Hoosier students reach higher levels of education. Indiana ranks among the lowest states in the percentage of residents over the age of 25 with a bachelor’s degree. There were 142 scholarships awarded statewide.

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Take the Give in Lake County: High School Challenge to give, lead, and make a difference in your community for one month. Legacy Foundation, Lake County’s community foundation, asks teens and high schools to volunteer and fundraise from April 1 to April 30 for a chance to win $1000.

Legacy Foundation is offering a $1000 grant to both the high school and the nonprofit that log the most volunteer hours; a $1000 grant to both the high school and the nonprofit that raise the most money; and a $1000 college scholarship to the student that wins the essay/ video contest. That’s a total of $5000 for giving back to your community!

“Philanthropy is not the bastion of the wealthy; in fact philanthropy is the arena for all to engage in improving the quality of life for our fellow man,” said Harry Vande Velde, president and CEO of Legacy Foundation. “Legacy Foundation created the High School Challenge to engage one of our most energetic and vital constituencies, teenagers! We recognize that teenagers are a marvelous resource in Lake County and the “Challenge” allows them to have some framework to work within, to become participants in a program that benefits their school, their community and themselves.”

For 30 days, high school students will tally their volunteer hours and fundraising dollars to show their school’s philanthropic pride. Give in Lake County: High School Challenge consists of three contests, each with at least $1000 at stake.

  • Volunteering– Volunteer with any Lake County nonprofit organization between April 1 and April 30. Track your volunteer hours. The school that logs the most hours will receive $1000 and the organization that receives the most volunteer hours will be granted $1000.
  • Fundraising– Each high school will select one (1) nonprofit organization to fundraise for throughout April. Promote the need and collect donations on the Legacy Foundation Donor Engagement Platform (www.legacyfdn.org/giveleadmakeadifference). In addition to the raised funds, the nonprofit that receives the most donations will be awarded $1000. The nominating high school will also win $1000.
  • Essay/ Video– have an innovative idea about how to make Lake County a better place to live, work and play? Tell us in 500 words or less, or create a 2-3 minute video. The student with the most inventive idea will receive a $1000 college scholarship.

Throughout the month of April, celebrate National Volunteer Month by getting youth involved with a worthy nonprofit organization. Encourage students to help a nonprofit better serve Lake County by raising funds or giving their time. On average, 15.5 million teenagers volunteer annually, contributing more than 1.3 billion hours of service.[1] Let’s see how many hours our teens can give in one month!

In addition to getting youth actively engaged in their communities, volunteering also helps indicate stronger academic achievement, greater interest in political and current events, and decreased participation in risky behaviors[2]. These positive behaviors become stronger with school-based service, especially among disadvantaged youth.

For many students, school plays a big role in whether or not they choose to volunteer or get the chance to serve. Service activities provided by the school may give youth their first experiences in developing a sense of belonging to a larger community and how they can be involved in it.

There is no deadline to sign up, but Lake County high schools are encouraged to register with Legacy Foundation soon, providing a staff contact who will serve as the high school’s representative. The staff representative from the winning schools of the volunteer contest and the fundraising contest will both win a $100 gift card.

For contest details visit: http://www.legacyfdn.org/youthphilanthropycouncilcontest.php.

Give big. Win big. Are you up to the challenge?

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