Trine’s Eash among first-generation students honored at banquet

Taylor Eash, a Trine University student from Shipshewana, was among 31 students honored by the Independent Colleges of Indiana (ICI) on Saturday, Nov. 5, at the 27th annual “Realizing the Dream” banquet.

Eash is a sophomore majoring in civil engineering.

The event, held at the Sheraton Indianapolis at Keystone Crossing, recognized first-generation students attending ICI campuses who were selected by their colleges for outstanding achievement in their freshman year.

Each honored student received a $2,500 check to help with college costs, and the “most influential” teacher/mentor chosen by each students received a $1,000 professional development grant. Matthew Tibbs, a teacher at Westview Jr./Sr. High School in Topeka, was selected by Eash and also attended the banquet along with Eash’s family.

Tibbs also serves as an adjunct professor at Trine and as a dual-enrollment instructor in English at Westview for Trine's Department of Humanities and Communication.

Kimberly Bennett, assistant vice president for enrollment management, represented Trine University at the event.

Keynote speaker was Bart Caylor, president and owner of Caylor Solutions. Caylor graduated magna cum laude from Anderson University and is a first-generation student who was honored at the first Realizing the Dream banquet in 1989.

The event is made possible by a grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. to the ICI. One out of every three students on ICI campuses is first-generation. Generous financial aid provided by the campuses themselves, combined with state and federal grants, makes a private college education a possibility for all students in Indiana.