Huntington, Ind.—Questa Foundation for Education’s board of directors recently selected 12 Huntington University students for participation in its Questa Scholars 1/2 Back Loan Program. This was the largest number of students chosen from any institution.
The 1/2 Back Loan Program, now in its third year, allows participants to borrow up to $20,000 over four years for college and have up to 50 percent of their principal loan balance forgiven if they graduate from college with a 2.75 GPA and choose to reside and work in northeast Indiana for at least five years after graduation.
The Huntington University students who were chosen automatically become eligible for the Huntington University Questa Scholars Payback Program which forgives an additional 25 percent of a Questa Scholar’s loan balance if the student participates in the 1/2 Back Loan Program and graduates from Huntington University.
“We’re thankful for the forward-thinking leadership and generosity of those at the Questa Foundation,” said Dr. Ann McPherren, vice president for university planning and strategy. “Through our partnership, a university education has become more accessible and affordable for Allen County students. Because the cap on state grants to Indiana students was lowered by 31 percent, efforts to assist students financially have become increasingly more vital. Huntington University is committed to helping students complete their education. Our partnership with the Questa Foundation is one way to accomplish that goal.”
The Huntington University students selected include
Tianna Clark, a freshman from Fort Wayne, Ind., and 2009 graduate from Blackhawk Secondary Christian School
Haylee Eckert, a sophomore political studies major from Roanoke, Ind., and 2008 graduate from Bishop Luers High School
Christopher Fox, a freshman from Fort Wayne, Ind., pre-medicine major and 2009 graduate of Northrop High School
Jerod Hevel, a freshman from New Haven, Ind., and 2009 graduate of New Haven High School
Lucy Luedeke, a sophomore public relations major from Fort Wayne, Ind., and 2008 graduate of Blackhawk Secondary Christian School
Austin Schenkel, a freshman pre-medicine major from Fort Wayne, Ind., and 2009 graduate of Northrop High School
Kara Sipe, a freshman social work major from Fort Wayne, Ind., and 2009 graduate of Blackhawk Secondary Christian School
Megan Storch, a freshman elementary education major from Fort Wayne, Ind., and 2008 graduate of Snider High School
Jacob Willinger, a freshman digital media arts major from Grabill, Ind., and 2009 graduate of Leo Junior-Senior High School
Erin Yoder, a freshman nursing major from Leo, Ind., and 2008 graduate of Leo Junior-Senior High School
Matthew Wilson, a sophomore business management major from Fort Wayne, Ind., and 2008 graduate of Homestead Senior High School
This year more than 400 high school graduates applied for the Questa Scholars 1/2 Back Loan Program, and 75 students representing 18 Allen County high school and homeschool programs were chosen.
“This year’s selection process was highly competitive,” said Christina Smith, executive director of Questa Foundation. “We enjoyed a large number of highly qualified and impressive applicants. We certainly wish Questa could have extended funding assistance to an even greater number of these promising young people.”
Applicants must have a minimum 2.75 cumulative grade point average to be eligible for consideration. Selection criteria are based upon demonstrated financial need and high academic achievement. Leadership experience, community service, and a desire to live and work in northeast Indiana after graduation also are taken into consideration.