FORTVILLE — The Mt. Vernon Education Foundation wants to recognize the district’s distinguished alumni, and organizers are asking for the public’s help identifying the best and brightest.
This year, the foundation is launching its first alumni award in which two recipients will be inducted into the Distinguished Alumni Hall of Fame.
The award was the result of a year-long strategic planning process, said education foundation director Renee Oldham. Organizers wished to find a way to recognize successful graduates while encouraging current students to dream big, she said.
District leaders recently renovated a space in the administration center to serve as an alumni center and left a wall blank with the hope they’d eventually fill the space with pictures and success stories of former students, said Superintendent Shane Robbins.
They worked with the education foundation to create the award, which will recognize graduates who have been out of high school for at least 10 years and are making a difference in their communities through either career or personal endeavors.
This year’s award winners will be recognized at the foundation’s 10-year anniversary gala in April.
Nominations will be accepted through March 23, and the nominator and inductee must be able to attend the gala April 14. Nominations forms can be found under the “latest news” tab on the foundation’s website, mtvernonfoundation.org.
A committee of administrators, community members and education foundation board members will review the applications and select the inductees.
Nominees do not have to live in Hancock County to be inducted.
The award is similar to Greenfield Central School Foundation’s Alumni Hall of Fame, which has recognized more than 25 Greenfield-Central, Greenfield or Central high school graduates since its inception in 2013.
Oldham sees the award as an opportunity to connect with and honor the district’s past graduates.
“It’s a great opportunity to celebrate those that have done things that enhance the lives of the communities they live in,” she said.
In its inaugural year, the award will be bestowed upon two. Depending on the number of nominations received, more than two nominees could be inducted annually in the years to come, Oldham said.
Nominations will be kept on file for consideration for five years, she said. Forms can be updated with more information for the committee to consider but won’t be deleted.
Now more than ever, students need role models to look up to, Oldham said. She hopes the alumni hall of fame serves as a way to provide students with that inspiration.
Robbins hopes displaying the alumni hall of fame where students can see it shows them what they’re capable of achieving.
The Mt. Vernon Education Foundation is accepting nominations for its new alumni hall of fame.
To nominate a distinguished alumni, visit mtvernonfoundation.org.
Nominations will be accepted until March 23.