Rich Wins Lilly Endowment in Warsaw

Warsaw Community High School senior Audrey Rich received the Lilly Endowment Kosciusko County Community Foundation scholarship Tuesday morning during choir practice.
The four-year scholarship will cover college tuition and books, but not room and board.
Rich’s parents are David and Candace Rich. At the time of her application, Rich was ranked eighth in her graduating class.
Her school activities have included Select Chorale, Thespian Troupe, One Act Plays, Track and Field, National Honor Society and high school musicals. Her community involvement has included her church youth group, Kosciusko Cares Coalition, Wagon Wheel Center for the Arts and Kosciusko Youth Leadership Academy. Her volunteer activities have included many church outreach activities and volunteer work with the Warsaw Parks Department.
She is also the founder of Rooted Garden, a garden which donates produce to Our Father’s House. Her volunteer time totaled 175 hours. Rich has worked as a waitress for over two years and as a babysitter.
Her references described Rich as smart, active, committed to serving others, social, exceptional, mature and adept at time management. Rich plans to attend Indiana University to study art history and informatics.
Suzie Light, Kosciusko County Community Foundation executive director, presented the scholarship to Rich.
The foundation received 46 scholarship applications.
“When we rank the different attributes that the kids bring to the table, community service is one of the top ones and academics is also up there,” Light said. “The fact that Audrey had a diversity of community activities was one of the reasons her application stood out.”
Rich said she was in disbelief when Light informed her in front of her choir class Tuesday morning that she received the scholarship.
“I worked really hard on the application process. I find I am always busy trying to balance my extracurricular activities and I enjoy being busy,” Rich said.
“I want to thank the Community Foundation for the scholarship. This is a huge honor and a great burden to be lifted with not having to pay for college.”
Rich’s parents, David and Candace Rich, said they are proud of their daughter.
“I’ve known since she was very young that she has a lot of varied interests and a lot of energy and now toward the end of high school I can see how it has come together to a very promising young life,” David said.
Candace said it is overwhelming that her daughter has been gifted with the scholarship.
“We always knew she was capable of doing great things. She has never shied away from a challenge or an obstacle and always went for it,” Candace said.
Troy Akers, WCHS principal, said Rich’s accomplishments have exemplified what the school mission is about.
“All the way from a top end academic person to the service learning that she is involved with, she still finds time to volunteer outside the school day. Her talents on the stage have been outstanding both vocally and as a performing artist, she has participated at the state level on the track team,” Akers said.