GREENFIELD — A Trine University sophomore from Greenfield was among 29 students throughout the state to be awarded scholarships through a program honoring first-generation college students.

Garrett Adams was honored last month through the “Realize the Dream” program, hosted by by Indiana Colleges of Indiana (ICI).

He and fellow honorees — one from each of Indiana’s private, nonprofit colleges and universities — were celebrated at a banquet Feb. 24 at the Eiteljorg Museum in Indianapolis.

The annual scholarship program recognizes first-generation college students from ICI colleges and universities. Students are selected for outstanding achievement as they work toward completing their bachelor’s degrees.

Each individual received a $4,000 scholarship, made possible by a grant from Lilly Endowment Inc.

At the banquet, each recipient shared a recorded video of themselves describing what it means to to be a first-generation college student, and thanking an influential educator they chose to honor. Each educator was awarded a $1,000 professional development grant.

Adams honored Andrew Shores, who taught him math at Morristown Jr./Sr. High School, including Algebra II, Pre-Calculus, Trigonometry and Calculus.

“He showed me how neat all of these mathematical principles are, where they are in life and gave me a new opportunity to see the world through a different lens,” said Adams, who is majoring in mechanical and electrical engineering.

According to the ICI, part of what made Adams stand out was his participation in Trine University’s Basic Utility Vehicle team as a freshman, on a team typically comprised of seniors.

Dottie L. King, ICI’s president and CEO, said it was inspiring to hear the first-hand accounts of first-generation college students like Adams and the impact educators have made on their drive to succeed.

“These scholarship awards will provide critical support for these young people who are dreaming of future success,” said King, who expressed gratitude to Lilly Endowment for supporting the ongoing scholarship program.

ICI serves as the collective voice for the state’s 29 private, nonprofit colleges and universities. According to the nonprofit, students at ICI colleges boast the highest four-year, on-time graduation rates in the state.