DONALDSON – Graduating at the top of your class often means being honored by your high school and giving a speech at graduation. This year Ancilla College will add one more way to honor these high achieving students—free tuition.
Beginning in 2015 Ancilla College will be offering full tuition scholarships to the top high school graduates from schools in 10 north-central Indiana counties.
“Ancilla wants to reward high achievement and help local graduates get started on their college journey with the Ancilla College Valedictorian-Salutatorian Scholarship,” said Ancilla president Ken Zirkle.
Ancilla’s ‘Val-Sal Scholarship’ represents free full-time tuition, as much as $13,500 each year to local graduates who attend the college. It will be offered to the top students from public and private high schools in Marshall, Fulton, Porter, Pulaski, Jasper, Starke, LaPorte, St. Joseph, Elkhart, and Kosciusko counties.
Local salutatorians, traditionally students who graduate second in their class, will be offered up to $10,000 in free tuition to attend the college.
“Valedictorian and salutatorians are chosen by many local high schools. These are academic titles used to honor the top two students who are then traditionally chosen to deliver the farewell speech at graduation. The valedictorian is the student with the highest rank among his or her graduating class, the salutatorian is usually second highest rank by grades,” said Zirkle.
Some regional schools have stopped naming valedictorians as part of graduation while other schools sometimes name three or four with high GPAs.
“We know there have been cases where there is more than one student chosen for these honors and we plan on offering the scholarship to each student chosen by their school based on class rank,” Zirkle said.
Offering scholarships to top graduates is just one more way Ancilla is supporting students in pursuit of higher learning, Zirkle said.
In 2013-14 the college provided over $900,000 in academic, need-based, and athletic scholarships to students alongside what they qualified for in federal and state education aid. Over 93 percent of students at Ancilla received financial aid of some kind.
“Many of our students come from families that don’t have very much set aside for education. We work with students and their families to make college affordable. We know that investing in them will pay off not just for them but for the communities in which they live and work,” said Mike Brown, Ancilla’s chief financial officer.
“As with other Ancilla scholarship programs, the award for each student is coordinated with the student’s eligibility for federal and Indiana grants. The Val-Sal is just one more way we are supporting students who want to earn a valuable college degree at a place based on solid values,” Brown said.
Fast Facts about Ancilla College:
• Founded in 1937 by the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ
• Indiana’s only junior college (private two-year college)
• 400 students enrolled in 18 degree programs
• Host to ten athletic teams in men’s and women’s sports; NJCAA