Currently in Indiana, more than 160,000 students from 410 different IHSAA member schools participate in high school athletics. The Indiana High School Athletic Association believes that the athletic arena is merely an extension of the classroom, and the lessons learned through participation will have a dramatic impact on today’s youth as they prepare to become the leaders of tomorrow.
In an effort to reward the efforts of Indiana’s high school student-athletes, the IHSAA, Methodist Sports Medicine, the Indianapolis Colts, Indiana Pacers, Indiana Fever, Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance, Sport Graphics, Inc., and WTHR-13 have partnered in sponsoring the C. Eugene Cato Memorial Scholarship Awards. Each year, a minimum of 13 seniors are chosen from applicants throughout the state to receive a $2,500 scholarship for their high school accomplishments. These recipients are Indiana’s brightest stars and they embody everything that is right about high school sports. These well-rounded, positive role models have demonstrated excellence in academics, school and community involvement, character, sportsmanship and citizenship.
All selected C. Eugene Cato Memorial Scholarship Award recipients will be honored on a date TBD at Gridiron Hall at the Indiana Farm Bureau Football Center as a part of the Methodist Sports Medicine Annual Thomas A. Brady Achievement Awards Banquet.
All scholarship money will be paid directly to the student. Scholarship winners must be enrolled at the collegiate institution by October 1, 2021, to receive the award.
Eugene Cato and the IHSAA
The Centennial Scholarship program was initiated in 2003-04 as a part of the IHSAA’s centennial celebration. This year, the annual scholarship awards program has been renamed in tribute to former IHSAA Commissioner C. Eugene Cato. “Gene” served as Assistant Commissioner of the Association from 1976 until he became the Commissioner of the IHSAA in 1983 - providing leadership until he retired in 1995. His passion for athletics and his belief in the intrinsic value of athletic competition on the formation of a child’s character enabled Gene to positively impact generations of young men and women with his well-known “Firm, Fair, and Friendly” approach to caring for others. Gene passed away in October of 2008.
- During the 2020-21 school year, the student must be enrolled and participating in interscholastic athletics at an IHSAA member school.
- The student must be a senior at the IHSAA member school who will graduate during the school year in which the award is being applied for.
- The student must have won a varsity letter as an athlete in at least one of the 22 IHSAA-sanctioned athletic programs.
- The student must be nominated by the principal or athletic director.
- The student must have a minimum of 3.00 on a 4.00 scale or the equivalent.
- The student must have no violations of his/her school's athletic code of conduct.
School Selection Process
Applications for the C. Eugene Cato Memorial Scholarship Awards are available on the IHSAA portal website (www.myihsaa.net). The application will be accessible to member school principals and athletic directors. The member school is responsible for establishing the process by which its nominee is selected. A member school principal may nominate only one student-athlete per year and should submit the application to the IHSAA by February 5, 2021.
The School Principal or Athletic Director should initiate the nomination process. To nominate an athlete, click here to login and complete the application. After completing the form, the information should be electronically sent to the nominated student. Once the student completes their section, the form should be electronically returned to the Principal/Athletic Director for a final review and submission to the IHSAA. If you have any questions on this process, please contact Chris Kaufman at firstname.lastname@example.org or 317-846-6601.