Jake Oostman ’25 was recognized by the Independent Colleges of Indiana with a “Realizing the Dream” scholarship, one of 29 first-generation college students statewide to be honored.
ICI spotlights students from Indiana’s private, non-profit colleges and universities who are the first in their families to attend college and are successfully advancing toward degree completion.
“This means a lot to me,” said Oostman, a native of Crown Point, Indiana. “It shows the work I am putting in is not going unnoticed. That encourages me to keep going on this path and to continue working to better myself. The scholarship was a big help with financial aid. It removed a little weight off of my chest and allowed me to focus more on academics and extra-curricular activities.”
A financial economics major with minors in religion and psychology, Oostman received a $4,000 scholarship from ICI, which was made possible by a grant from the Lilly Endowment, Inc.
As part of the award, each honoree selected an inspirational teacher or mentor who also received a $1,000 professional development grant. Oostman chose Vincent Lewis, a social studies teacher at Crown Point High School.
Oostman is a member of Delta Tau Delta fraternity and a member of the Little Giant track and field team, where he has earned all-North Coast Conference honors in the multi-events. Additionally, he is active within the Center for Innovation, Business, and Entrepreneurship (CIBE), and is a member of the Sphinx Club, La Alianza, Wabash Christian Men, and Wabash Fishing Club.
“When you think about the work ethic that it takes to be an accomplished decathlete in track and field, you begin t understand why Jake was selected as this year’s ‘Realizing the Dream’ scholarship winner,” said Greg Redding, Dean of Students and Associate Professor of German. “Jake is a true scholar-athlete: a high achiever in the classroom and an all-conference performer on the track. Yet, he still finds time to be active with a host of other student organizations. He is clearly taking full advantage of his opportunities as a first-generation college student.”
ICI has honored Indiana’s first-generation college students with the “Realizing the Dream” scholarship for more than 30 years.