Lehe: Scholarships to help volunteers, future teachers

Posted by: Jessica L Bruder  | Friday, October 4, 2019

College can be expensive, but there are some pretty incredible scholarships available right now that can help significantly offset the cost of classes for some Hoosier students. Those volunteering as firefighters and EMTs, as well as those pursuing a degree in teaching should consider applying for these opportunities.

Ivy Tech and the Indiana Volunteer Firefighters Association have teamed up to create a scholarship for any active volunteer firefighter or emergency medical personnel in Indiana. The Public Safety Scholarship will be available during the 2020-2021 school year and is open to both full- and part-time students. The funds cover tuition and technology fees at any of Ivy Tech’s 40-plus campuses across the state.

In recent years, there has been a shortage of firefighters across the state and the country. A report from the National Fire Protection Agency shows the number of volunteer firefighters has fallen by 12 percent nationally over the last three decades. This scholarship will serve as a valuable recruitment tool by offering volunteers the opportunity obtain the skills they need to jumpstart or advance their careers.

The idea originated from a proposed bill during the past legislation session. Though the bill did not pass, Ivy Tech launched the scholarship as a two-year pilot program. State lawmakers will review the results in 2022 and discuss the possibility of expanding the scholarship. To learn more, visit www.ivfa.org/news.

Everyone remembers their favorite teacher. Educators have a huge impact on the lives of their students, and we want to see even more inspiring teachers in Indiana’s classrooms making a difference. That’s why I supported legislation during the 2016 session establishing a scholarship opportunity to encourage more high-achieving students to pursue a teaching career in Hoosier classrooms.

High school and college students interested in pursuing a career in teaching should apply for the Next Generation Hoosier Educators Scholarship. Through this renewable scholarship, as many as 200 students can receive up to $7,500 each year for four academic years. Interested students must be in the top 20 percent of their high school graduation class or earn a score in the top 20th percentile on the SAT or ACT. They must also attend a college in Indiana and commit to teaching in an Indiana classroom for five years after earning a degree. For more information and to apply before the Nov. 30 deadline, visit www.LearnMoreIndiana.org/nextteacher.

In addition to these opportunities, students should also fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid to apply for financial aid for college or grad school. For more information, visit www.FAFSA.gov. If you have any questions about these programs, please reach out by emailing h25@iga.in.gov or by calling 317-234-2993.


State Rep. Don Lehe (R-Brookston) represents House District 25, which
includes portions of Carroll, Cass, Clinton, Tippecanoe and White counties.
here for a high-resolution photo.