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Four Macon County Students Receive Hospital Foundation Scholarships


Four graduates of high schools in Macon County who are pursuing careers in health care and agriculture have received a total of $17,500 in scholarships through the Decatur Memorial Foundation.

Emma Baker, a Warrensburg-Latham High School graduate, and Jacob Scherer, a Mount Zion High School graduate, were each awarded $5,000 as recipients of the Decatur Memorial Agriculture Scholarship.

Baker will attend Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, where she plans to study agribusiness economics. Growing up on a seventh-generation family farm, Baker was inspired to pursue an education and career in agribusiness.

Scherer is a sophomore at Iowa State University, where he studies agricultural engineering. He was inspired to choose his education and career path by his father, who is an agricultural engineer, and through his experiences growing up on his grandparents’ farm.

Lillian Valladares, a graduate of Argenta-Oreana High School, was awarded $5,000 through the Dr. Richard H. Fritz Nursing Scholarship. Valladares will attend Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville as a first-year nursing student with an interest in pediatric oncology.

Rylee Vought, a Sangamon Valley High School graduate, received $2,500 through the Dr. Thomas Samuels Nursing Scholarship. Vought is a senior nursing student with an interest in pediatrics at Millikin University. She serves as a patient care tech at Decatur Memorial Hospital.

For more information about scholarship opportunities through the Decatur Memorial Foundation, call Julie Bilbrey at 217-876-2146 or email Detailed guidelines and application forms are available online at

under the "Grant and Scholarship Opportunities" tab. Applications can be submitted online.