Annual Kendrick Foundation dinner honors 40 scholars
By Julie Crothers
June 3, 2012, last update: 6/3 @ 7:23 am
MOORESVILLE — For nursing student Nikki Helton, being named a 2012 Kendrick Foundation Scholar is a chance for a fresh start.
The 42-year-old mother of four is currently enrolled at Ivy Tech Community College in Bloomington and is seeking her associate’s degree in nursing.
Helton, along with the 39 other scholars, was honored during Thursday’s Kendrick Foundation Scholarship Recognition Dinner.
“I want to thank my husband and my children for their support and the Kendrick Foundation for providing me with this opportunity,” Helton said.
This year, the Kendrick Foundation honored 40 students — the largest number of scholars in the program’s history — with scholarships and celebrated their achievements during the annual dinner. The combined scholarships are worth a potential $600,000, but the amount allocated will depend on the student’s school of choice.
Ryan Schneck, a pharmacy student at Butler University and 2011 Martinsville High School graduate, has received the Kendrick Foundation scholarship for the past two years.
“Butler was my dream school. It was always my first choice, and without this scholarship, I wouldn’t be able to be there,” Schneck said.
Once he has completed his education, Schneck said he plans to return to Morgan County to use his talents to benefit the local community.
“Morgan County is such a wonderful place, and I really like it here. It’s a great community, and I wouldn’t want to work anywhere else,” he said. “This community has given me so much.”
Fellow scholar Megan Harrison echoed Schneck’s thanks to the Kendrick board for its generosity.
“It’s such a huge blessing for all of us (scholars),” Harrison said, “… to know that we can get an education and not be forced to deal with such a financial burden. To come out of school not loaded down with debt.”
Harrison, who is studying public health at the University of Minnesota, said she decided on her career when she attended a summer camp as part of the Morgan County 4-H program.
“I attended this camp at Purdue University where we studied food science and talked about agriculture and health,” Harrison said. “I knew then what I wanted to do. This scholarship has helped me achieve my goals.”
Keith Jewell, senior vice president and chief operating officer of Franciscan St. Francis Health, gave the keynote address during Thursday’s celebration.
“By eliminating smoking and obesity, we can eliminate the health care crisis,” Jewell said. “It’s hard to get people to change their habits, but by eliminating just those two (problems), we can make a significant change to the issues we face in health care.”
Jewell encouraged the scholars to do their part in embracing the opportunities and challenges they will face as they enter their careers in health care.
“There are some exciting challenges ahead … and a host of opportunities,” Jewell said. “Remember to get joy out of your job every day and remember that every patient, every person in that bed is real. Touch people’s lives, and let them touch yours.”
During Thursday’s dinner, the foundation also recognized outgoing board members Norman Connell and Jim Harris. Both Connell and Harris will retire from the board of directors this year.
How the program works
The scholarship funds are made possible through the Kendrick Foundation Inc., a private organization established in 2001 following the sale of the Kendrick Memorial Hospital. With assets of more than $27 million, the foundation provides grants to medical and health programs, community health care outreach programs, hospice programs and programs for the medically indigent, as well as providing scholarships for students enrolled in health care-related educational programs.
Students who receive the Kendrick Foundation scholarship can apply it to tuition only and use up to a maximum of $15,000 per person per school year to attend a school of their choice. Students must be studying in a health care-related field, such as medicine, dentistry, nursing or other programs. Students enrolled in a pre-program such as pre-med or pre-pharmacy do not qualify for the scholarship.
Recipients can re-apply for the scholarship each year as long as they remain eligible.
The scholarship is also open to nontraditional/post-high school students and those pursuing graduate degrees in a health care or medical field. Scholarship recipients are completely free to choose which educational institution they would like to attend, with preference being given to candidates who will attend Indiana schools.
The 40 scholarship recipients were chosen by the Kendrick Foundation Board of Directors, which shares its staff with the Community Foundation of Morgan County. The board of directors includes president Shelley Voelz, secretary James Harris, Norman Connell, Mae Cooper, John Ehrhart and Dr. R. Barry Melbert. The staff includes Tom Zoss, Larry Bryan, Tonya Todd, Sarah Richardson, Diana Hoffman, Christine Caturano and Cynthia Brewer.
Many of the Kendrick scholars are already enrolled in college. Only a small portion are seniors who graduated from high school in 2012, said communications officer Sarah Richardson.
The 2013 scholarship cycle will start in the fall. More information can be sought by visiting the Kendrick Foundation website at www.kendrickfoundation.org or by calling the Community Foundation at 317-831-1232.
2012 Kendrick Foundation Scholars
James Adam Lawson
The 2012 Kendrick Foundation Scholarship winners pose for a photo at Thursday’s dinner. Pictured, in no particular order, are Alex Anderson, Sarah Angermeier, Elizabeth Bennett, Pamela Breedlove, Ashley Butler, Courtney Demeter, Tiffani Dillon, Megan Harrison, Nikki Helton, Abigail Howden, Abby Huff, Anna James, James Lawson, Allison Lipps, Brian Livingston, Damon Martin, Charles Matias, Kelli Norton-Houchens, Mikinzie O’Neal, Ryan Queen, Skyann Rittenhouse, Ryan Schneck, Kelsey Shields, Mary Sipla, Daniel Stec, Bailey Tri, Sarah Vaughn, Sara Walton, Kathleen Weddle, Bailey Wellspring, Gina Whitney and Cheryl Yarnell. Julie Crothers | Reporter-Times
Sarah Angermeier, a 2012 Kendrick Foundation Scholar, thanks the organization for their support as she talks about her future plans. Seated are the other 2012 scholars as they await their chance on stage. Thursday’s dinner honored 40 Kendrick Scholars. Julie Crothers | Reporter-Times