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George Vlahakis
IU Media Relations

Last modified: Thursday, August 21, 2003

Valparaiso's Tilleman selected as Wells Scholar at Indiana University

EDITORS: Publication-quality photos of all of the Wells Scholars are available online at

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Morgan Tilleman of Valparaiso, Ind., an incoming freshman at Indiana University Bloomington, is one of 21 young people who have been selected as Wells Scholars for the upcoming academic year. The scholarship, named in honor of the late IU Chancellor Herman B Wells, ranks among the most competitive and prestigious awards offered by any American university.

Wells Scholars who are incoming freshmen receive full tuition and fees, as well as a living stipend for four years of study on the IUB campus.

The scholarship is named in honor of Wells (1902-2000), who devoted his extraordinary life to IU. Wells came to IU as an undergraduate, returned as a faculty member and then served as a dean before becoming president of the university for a quarter century. He remained the university's chancellor until his death.

A National Merit Scholar, Tilleman graduated from Valparaiso High School, where he earned an International Baccalaureate Diploma. A 2003 Indianapolis Star Academic All-Star, he was the winner of the Indiana State Trig-Star Contest, an Indiana state debate finalist and a Presidential Scholar finalist.

Tilleman won state and national medals in the Science Olympiad, which he participated in for two years. A four-year member of his school's debate team, he served as co-captain for two years. He participated in Academic Super Bowl for four years and captained the social studies team for three years. He also was historian of the German club. In addition, he participated in band for four years and was selected for both All-State and All-State Honor bands. A long-time Boy Scout, he served his troop in the roles of assistant senior patrol leader, instructor and troop guide. He also earned an Eagle Scout Award. Tilleman plans to major in English and German.

The Wells Scholars program also offers special seminars, an optional year of study abroad and support for a summer research project or internship. The Wells Scholars Program emphasizes close interaction with faculty, academic and career advising, opportunities for community service and contact with distinguished visitors.

Examples of past summer experiences include serving with Outreach Kenya Development Volunteers to provide AIDS education and build a public library in western Kenya, conducting research at the National Institutes of Health, performing in the Boulder Jazz Dance Workshop and interning at the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, the Canadian Parliament and the U.S. Supreme Court.

Wells Scholars are also members of the Honors College, where they have the opportunity to apply for grants in support of research, teaching internships, professional experience, creative activity, conference travel and honors thesis work.

They are selected for having demonstrated character, leadership and distinction, both inside and outside of the classroom.

Hometown information:
Morgan Tilleman is the son of Joanne and Charles Tilleman, 1108 Cortland Dr., Valparaiso, Ind.