Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship

Independent Colleges of Indiana, Inc. (ICI) administers the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program statewide. ICI is a nonprofit corporation that represents 30 regionally accredited degree granting, nonprofit, private colleges and universities in the state. The scholarships are the result of a statewide Lilly Endowment Inc. initiative to:

  1. help raise the level of educational attainment in Indiana; 
  2. increase awareness of the beneficial roles Indiana community foundations can play in their communities;
  3. 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. 

Nearly 5,000 full-tuition scholarships have been awarded, and over $424 million in scholarship tuition has been provided since the program’s inception in 1998.

The Community Foundation of Madison & Jefferson County is tasked to select one student from Jefferson County. Independent Colleges of Indiana, Inc. then awards the scholarship each year on behalf of the Lilly Endowment. 

The Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship provides a 4-year, full-tuition scholarship to one selected graduating senior in Jefferson County, Indiana. The scholarship must be used to pursue a baccalaureate degree at any accredited public or private Indiana college or university. Recipients are also granted a $900 yearly stipend for books and required equipment.

The Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship is awarded based on a blind competitive process that is overseen by the Community Foundation of Madison & Jefferson County. 

To be eligible for the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship in Jefferson County, applicants MUST:

  • Reside in Jefferson County, Indiana
  • Attend an accredited high school located within Jefferson County, Indiana (accredited by the State Board of Education or a national or regional accreditation agency recognized by the State Board of Education)
  • Be in the top 20% of their graduating class
  • Be graduating from an accredited Indiana high school by June 30 of their graduating year
  • Intend to pursue a full-time baccalaureate degree at an accredited Indiana public or private nonprofit college or university
  • Have two letters of recommendation – one from a teacher; one from a source outside of the applicant’s school system such as an employer, volunteer coordinator, church leader, 4-H leader, etc.

(This timeline is for the 2021-22 school year process)

  • July 1 – Applications available at on the Scholarship page
  • August 18 (noon) – Deadline to submit applications (includes 2 letters of rec.)
  • September 17 – Finalists are notified; essays and interviews are scheduled
  • September 23  – Essays completed at the Community Foundation office
  • October 4 – Interviews completed at the Community Foundation office
  • December – 2022 winner announced

All finalists must agree to appear at the Community Foundation office to complete a timed essay and for an interview with the selection committee. Dates are provided to finalists at the time of their notification of continuing in the process. 

These scores are encouraged, but not required. The committee understands that the recent COVID-19 crisis interfered with many plans to take the tests. You may submit the scores in order to provide the committee with more information about your qualifications, but the choice is yours. You may also submit your PSAT score.

All successful applicants must adhere to the announced timeline. Late applicants, or those unable to participate in the essay or interview will not be considered for the award.

Contact Julie Wells at the Community Foundation – (812) 265-3327 or [email protected].

Abigail Fulton 2021 Jefferson County Lilly Endowment Community Scholar

Abigail Fulton is the daughter of Josh and Paula Fulton of Hanover. She graduated from Southwestern High School, and is  attending Butler University to pursue a career in law.

While at Southwestern High School, Abby was a three-sport varsity athlete and ranked #1 in her class, serving as Student Council president. She helped found the Mayor’s Youth Council and represented the United Way among her many philanthropic endeavors. 

Upon learning of the award Fulton commented, “I felt gratitude and immense appreciation for the Community Foundation, all of the faculty and staff at Southwestern High School and my loving family for allowing me to have this life-changing opportunity. I am so thankful to have received this award and am excited to use it as my pathway for bettering the lives of fellow Hoosiers through a career in politics and law.”

Including Fulton, six finalists were chosen. Those finalists (and their schools) were: Sebastian Biallas (Madison Consolidated), Autumn Harmon (Southwestern), Johanna Leatherman (Shawe Memorial), Emily Studebaker (Madison Consolidated), and Trey Suggett (Shawe Memorial). Biallas, Harmon, Leatherman, Studebaker, and Suggett will each receive a $1,000 Community Foundation Scholar Award for being named a finalist and to recognize their efforts and achievements.

Past Lilly Endowment Community Scholars

YearLilly Endowment Community Scholar
2021Abigail Fulton
2020Luka Chabukashvili
2019Grace Brautigam
2018Benjamin Hardin
2017Catherine Fisher
2016Seth Brawner
2015Abigale Wynn
2014Katie Browning
2013Brittany Dicus
2012Erin Saige Sentell
2011Chelsea Stephan
2010Candi Cain & Maggie Thomas
2009 Hilary Deuser & Jordan Fry
2008Levi Hamner & Haley Owens
2007Brittany Drossert & Shawna Finney
2006Van Green & Kara Ricketts
2005Kevin Brittain & Jordan Wilkerson
2004Christopher Deaton, Brandon Kocher, & Ashly Trantham
2003Ashley Bruther, Brian Consley, & Tiffani Kring 
2002J. Chase Crafton, Angela Hamilton, & Brianna Howard 
2001Jaman Ferguson, Lance Gassert, & Brooke Johnson
2000Douglas Carpenter & Maureen Davis
1999Sarah Brandenburg & Laura Edwards
1998Gabriel Freeman

Apply Now

The Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Application is now CLOSED.

Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Application Due In: