September 2018 News

National Merit Commended Students 2019

Monday, September 24, 2018

The following seniors are being recognized as Commended Students in the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Program:

Grace Allman
Joseph Batis
Grace Charpentier
Reeya Chenanda
Dawson Crisman
Ian Efsits
Kellie Geisel
Eric Harman
Noah Migoski
Jacob Nichols
Sterling Saint Rain
Samuel Shephard

2019 National Merit Semifinalists

Friday, September 14, 2018

Congratulations to our 2019 National Merit Semifinalists:

Dryden Frecker
Daniel Karagory
Chloe Thomas
Jason Wroblewski
Benjamin Riggs
Sage Hamm
Rahul Agarwal
Lillian Weber

John Marsh Named Recipient of Inaugural Robert P. Bell Creative Teaching Award

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Dr. Barton, Mr. Marsh, Dr. Smith
L to R: Dr. Vickie Barton, Executive Director of the Indiana Academy; John Marsh, recipient of the Robert P. Bell Creative Teaching Award; Dr. Jeff Smith, Director of Academic Affairs

The Community Foundation of Muncie and Delaware County, Inc. has announced that John Marsh has been awarded the inaugural Robert P. Bell Creative Teaching Award to recognize his innovation in the classroom.

Marsh, a history teacher at the Indiana Academy for Science, Mathematics, and Humanities, was nominated by Indiana Academy’s Director of Academic Affairs, Dr. Jeff Smith, for his execution of three recent Robert P. Bell Education Grants.

This past May, for example, Marsh led his students to recreate three important historical caves along with art to establish an exhibit called “the Cave of Time.” The Bell Grant was used to build the set and create the artifacts within the caves. As part of the project, students wrote scripts to be used to lead tours for several hundred students and Muncie community members.

Cave construction
Mr. Marsh oversees a group of students painting part of the Cave of Time

“These projects are major building events and require the close coordination of numerous students and adults,” wrote Smith in his nomination. “The projects also serve as significant education events for other children (and adults). I think you would be very hard pressed to come up with a teacher who has had more impact on not only his students, but also on the much larger community for Muncie and Delaware County.”

Smith also explained that beyond the projects associated with his Bell Grants, Marsh’s World Regions class is very popular and always has maximum enrollment. In this class, students identify, research, and build a model of a religious artifact. The artifacts are put on display along with background information on the artifact and associated religion. Indiana Academy students and staff take time to view these projects extending the lessons from the classroom to the entire school community.

Marsh was selected for the Robert P. Bell Creative Teaching Award because he has demonstrated a commitment to education through creative and innovative projects in his classroom. This was illustrated by his well-developed projects funded through the Robert P. Bell Education Grants and his desire to extend the subject matter learned by students to the community at-large.

Tour group
A group of students tour the Cave of Time

Marsh was surprised with the award in front of students, administrators, and family at the Indiana Academy on September 11.

The Robert P. Bell Creative Teaching award was established to compliment the Robert P. Bell Education Grants program and honor teachers who have gone above and beyond to use creativity and innovation to enhance learning by their students. The annual program rewards, recognizes, and encourages extraordinary educators who have applied for, received, and executed a Robert P. Bell Grant from The Community Foundation in their classroom.

To commemorate the award, The Community Foundation of Muncie and Delaware County awarded a $1,000 grant to Indiana Academy for Science, Mathematics, and Humanities to be used by John Marsh in his classroom. For more information about the Robert P. Bell Creative Teaching Award, please visit The Community Foundation’s website at

By Kallie Sulanke, Community Engagement Officer, The Community Foundation of Muncie and Delaware County

Tour group
A view of the innermost chamber of the Cave of Time