2021 Scholarships Awarded to Current College/Vocational Students

Each year the Foundation awards scholarships to Blackford County students already working on college degrees or vocational certificates. This August, 12 students were awarded $17,460 from five different scholarship funds specifically designated for such postsecondary students.

Spencer Blakely was awarded the new Don McAfee Memorial Scholarship and a Richard M. and Ruth L. Flatter Memorial Scholarship. He is a junior studying biochemistry at Ball State University.
Jessica Manley received the Howard and Helen McCollum Family Scholarship and a Richard M. and Ruth L. Flatter Memorial Scholarship as a junior in chemistry and pre-pharmacy at Ball State University.
Shanda Miller was awarded a Floyd E. and Betty J. Huffman Memorial Scholarship and a Richard M. and Ruth L. Flatter Memorial Scholarship. She is a senior in nursing and psychology at Anderson University.
Kyle Price received a Floyd E. and Betty J. Huffman Memorial Scholarship to train as an electrician’s apprentice with Muncie Electrical JATC (Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee).
Nick Price was awarded a Richard M. and Ruth L. Flatter Memorial Scholarship. He is a senior studying finance at Western Michigan University.

Seven students were awarded a Voyance and Zella Kegerreis Memorial Scholarship and a Richard M. and Ruth L. Flatter Memorial Scholarship:
Sara Gregory, who is a senior pursuing general studies at Ball State University;
Gabrielle Henderson, a junior in integrative studio practice at IUPUI;
Elizabeth Langdon, a sophomore in nursing at Anderson University;
Scott McCaffery, a junior in computer technology/computer science at Ball State;
Brenner Romine, a junior in social studies education and history at Ball State;
Chloe Whitehurst, a senior in human resource management at Ball State ; and
Molly Wolfe, a sophomore in English at Ball State.

2022 Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Applications Available

Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship

The Blackford County Community Foundation, Inc. is nominating one local student to receive a Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship in 2022. This award provides full tuition, required fees and a special allocation of up to $900 per year for required books and equipment for four years of undergraduate study on a full-time basis leading to a baccalaureate degree at any Indiana public or private college or university accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

To be eligible for an award, a student must be a Blackford County resident who will graduate by the end of June 2022 with a diploma from a regionally accredited Indiana high school and who has a minimum GPA of 3.0 (4.0 scale).

Applications are available at the Blackford County Community Foundation office, 121 N High Street, Hartford City, and online at http://www.blackfordcofoundation.org/scholarships-2/applying-for-a-scholarship/lilly-endowment-community-scholarship/.

Applications should be submitted to the Foundation office by September 9, 2021, at 4:30 p.m.

New Disc Golf Park Announced

The City of Hartford City and the Blackford County Community Foundation have partnered to award $30,000 to the Hartford City Parks Department for the installation of a new disc golf course. The Blackford Disc Golf Club is volunteering to provide the manpower to implement the planning and installation of the course.

The new course will be located at the park currently known as the Lions Club Park in Hartford City.

Disc golf is one of the fastest growing additions to community parks. Nearly 2 million Americans already play.

Disc golf is similar to golf except that it is played with frisbee-like discs rather than with a ball and golf clubs. The sport is easy to learn and easy to play for people of all ages and fitness levels.

The disc golf course will provide low impact exercise as players walk the 18-hole course, an approximate distance of 3 miles. Recent studies show a correlation between playing disc golf and improved mental health.

The $15,000 in funding from the Foundation largely comes from the GIFT VII monies given to the Foundation by Lilly Endowent Inc. in 2020. The funds are to be used to encourage youth and family programming in the community’s parks and greenspaces. The disc golf park will be a new addition to the county that will add additional recreational opportunities for families.

For more information on the Blackford Disc Golf Club, contact Tyler Hunt at thunt@blackfordcounty.com.

Julie Forcum Serves 10 Years

As a ten-year member of the Board of Directors for the Blackford County Community Foundation, Julie Forcum has seen the Foundation double the size of its assets while she served. Forcum brought considerable knowledge and experience to the Board as she had previously served on the board of Jay County’s community foundation, the Portland Foundation. During her time on the Blackford County Community Foundation Board, Forcum worked on the grants committee and often shared her expertise with the investment, publicity, and development committees. She also served as the Board’s secretary for several years.

Her service to this community is much appreciated.

New Dick Peck Scholarship Established

Richard Peck, and his wife, Regina Peck, established the Dick Peck Scholarship to support a student graduating from Blackford County High School. Mr. Peck graduated from Montpelier High School.

The $5,000 scholarship will go to a graduating senior from Blackford High School each year. The student must plan to attend an accredited Indiana college or university, have a GPA between 2.7 and 3.3 (unweighted), and demonstrate financial need.

This scholarship will be awarded for the first time in the spring of 2021. Students making an application for scholarships available through the Blackford County Community Foundation who meet the specific scholarship criteria will be eligible for this award.

Pennington Awarded Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship

Since eighth grade, Layla Pennington has been determined to excel during her high school years. Her goal? To be named the valedictorian of the Class of 2021. And as her dad said, “She killed it!”

High school has not been all about academics, though. Pennington claims that the best thing she’s done is participating in soccer. The high school team has had a couple of great seasons, and she was the team captain this year as a senior. It’s been an especially good experience in terms of improving her team building skills and her leadership skills. She also served as a referee at several soccer games, including at some of her younger sister’s games. At those games, Pennington found herself turning into the big sis coach who wanted to yell directions at her little sis. She had to steel herself to be the ref.

Pennington’s experiences in National Honor Society have pushed her out of her comfort zone, she said, as she was asked to participate in community service. Last year she tutored a fifth grader for several months.

Pennington plans to study something in the field of medicine, perhaps pharmaceuticals. Her ideal job would be working in a lab and doing medical research. She is currently visiting colleges and making applications as she heads toward making a definite college choice.

Pennington knows she’s arrived at this spot because she worked hard to make it here, and the result is rewarding. She couldn’t be more grateful and thankful for the opportunities that have come her way.

Elks Donate to Cancer Support

Elks Lodge #625 has once again contributed the proceeds from its fall dinner to Cancer Support for Blackford County. The donation of $3,395 came from the Elks’ first ever drive thru dinner fundraiser, which served 144 meals on Saturday, November 14.

The Elks have been fundraising for Cancer Support, making a large contribution each fall, since 2008.

The Cancer Support group consists of local volunteers. The group has been visiting Blackford County cancer patients and dropping off a generous gift bag that includes gas and restaurant gift cards along with other items that help make cancer treatment sessions a bit less stressful for patients. The group has worked with the Foundation since 2007. In a typical year, 45-50 patients receive the totes.

Rapid Relief Fund

In response to local needs arising from the COVID-19 crisis, the Blackford County Community Foundation has established the Rapid Relief Fund. The Foundation will specifically make funds available to organizations that are responding to the needs that are lasting beyond the initial few months of the pandemic. This fund was created as a direct response to the COVID-19 spread but will also be available for use in future emergency situations. These Foundation funds will be granted to local nonprofit organizations rather than directly to individuals. If your organization is affected, please contact the Foundation to discuss how this funding might help.

Donations to this new fund will be matched by GIFT VII Lilly Endowment Inc. dollars. For every $1 contribution to the fund, 50 cents will also be added to the fund. Make online donations here and designate the donation for the Rapid Relief Fund on the PURPOSE line. Or mail a contribution to Blackford County Community Foundation, 121 N. High St., P.O. Box 327, Hartford City, IN 47348.

Speaking of Yesterday Volume 2 Books Available

The Women of Worth continued their focus on the women and men who have contributed their time and energy in improving the lives of their families and the lives of all those living in Blackford County by compiling a second volume of life stories of local senior citizens. The project was begun in Indiana’s Bicentennial year 2016 as part of the statewide celebration. Seventeen interviews and stories were included in that first volume.

This volume adds another 21 stories. Most of the stories shared come from people born in the 1920s and ’30s. They each tell about growing up, often sharing their perspectives on life during the Great Depression and World War II.

Both volumes are available at the Foundation office for $5 each.