The WNHS-AA is VERY proud to introduce the recipients of the 2021 Alumni Scholarship. I’m sure you will agree with us that these graduating seniors are very worthy students. Here are the bios that will introduce you to these very impressive young men and women. Congratulations to all, and thank you again to all who donated to make this scholarship possible.
2021 Scholarship Recipients
2021 “Boost” scholarship recipient Julia Nordstrom
First of all, I would like to thank the Association for their scholarship program and their generous donors. Throughout my high school years, Wheaton North has been a wonderful, caring community, and this spirit shines through the Alumni Association. At Wheaton North, I have found a great community and amazing teachers who truly love teaching. I’ve enjoyed my time at Wheaton North so much that I chose to go to a college just five minutes away. Next year, I will be studying mathematics at Wheaton College. Although I am sad to be ending my time at Wheaton North, I am excited for what lies ahead!
Fall 2021 update:
“I would like to thank you again for your generous scholarship. I have loved being at Wheaton College these past few months. I am more than halfway through my first semester here and I feel very blessed to be at Wheaton. Having my family close by has been an extra blessing! I am also really enjoying my classes. I am majoring in mathematics, and my math classes have been very challenging but also very rewarding. Thank you again, Wheaton North Alumni Association, for helping get me to where I am now! I am proud to be a Wheaton North alumna.”
2021 “Boost” scholarship recipient Ayesha Shafiuddin
Wheaton North has impacted me as a student in many ways. Not only did the community of students and staff uplift my learning, but they also challenged me to break through my academic limits and soar higher. With each class, each extracurricular, and each interaction, I always grew. I remember the day my family and I earned our American citizenship during my sophomore year– the entire community of teachers and students chose to celebrate with us. Though there were many barriers that I faced as an immigrant and a new citizen, Wheaton North taught me the importance of perseverance and grit. These are among the countless lessons that I will carry with me as I continue my journey in America.
Next school year, I am happy to announce that I will be continuing my education at College of Dupage, where I will be majoring in Business Administration. I am so excited to continue my learning, and I will carry the experiences I have had at Wheaton North to enrich my future schooling. Thank you for honoring my dreams through this scholarship, and making my future education a reality. I am endlessly grateful for this opportunity and aspire to give back to this wonderful community the same way it has supported me.
Fall 2021 update:
As a freshman in college this year, I’ve ventured into various opportunities that have helped me tremendously in my academic goals for my first semester. One of the ways I used your scholarship funds was to enrich my academic career with the necessary items I needed from the school bookstore. This covered the multitude of expenses that came from textbooks, access-code cards, as well as lab books for my course material. As I continue my business administration major, I’m learning about the different careers that can come out of the business field. Currently, I am taking an accounting class which has already taught me a lot about what a real-life CPA does, and has allowed me to become an excel specialist through a certification exam. I plan on exploring further career paths through different classes at college and the scholarship you have graciously granted will only accelerate my progress towards that goal. I hope to give back to the community the same way you have honored my education and my dreams. Thank you!
Best, Ayesha Shafiuddin
2021 “Boost” scholarship recipient Thian Dim
First and foremost, I would like to express my thanks to the Wheaton North Alumni Association. Their generosity in seeing my potential when I myself doubted my abilities has been a great encouragement. Wheaton North has definitely played a huge role in my life by giving me a community of friends, trusted adults, and passionate teachers. From the classes I took in freshman year at Wheaton North, I developed an interest in the development of cities and how urban planners can create sustainable, thriving communities for people of all backgrounds to live in. Having been a refugee who has lived in various environments, I know how important it is to have a healthy community that supports people with the resources and services to grow into their potential. Wheaton has done that for me and I plan on sharing that with those in need of it. Furthermore, being in the Environmental Club and Wheaton North Orchestra has taught me to be a productive team member which will prepare me for college and my future career. With that in mind, I will be majoring in Urban Studies at Wheaton College this fall. Thank you again for your consideration and willingness to help me achieve my goals by awarding me this scholarship.
Fall 2021 update:
First of all, thank you for the scholarship. It has helped lessen my worries about paying for my education at Wheaton College. With the lessened stress, I can focus more on my classes and the activities that I dedicate my time to. I am currently taking four general education classes: English Writing, Core 101: What is a Thriving City, Old Testament Archaeology, and New Testament Archaeology. I am also involved in Taekwondo Club, and Family Group (Bible study group). Other than college, I am involved in the Praise and Worship team for the church which takes up a lot of my weekend time. This semester is ending soon and next semester, I will start taking classes related to my major, which is urban studies. I have been selected to be part of Aequitas, which, to put it simply, is an honors program with a focus on urban leadership. Through this program, I will be studying abroad this summer. The destination is not decided yet, but I am sure it will be a good experience for myself and my future career. I am planning on graduating with a bachelor’s in urban studies and then landing a job as an urban planner after graduation. That is all I have to update for now. I am slowly getting into a routine of college life which is balancing schoolwork, social life, church, and family. I am so grateful to the Wheaton North Alumni for generously giving back to Wheaton students, including me so that they can thrive in whatever they plan on doing.
2021 Wheaton North High School Alumni Association scholarship recipient Morayo Oladipo
I would first like to thank the Wheaton North Alumni Association for supporting my collegiate aspirations through this scholarship. Despite this bizarre year, Wheaton North has continuously provided me with the encouragement I need to follow my dreams, and for that, I am eternally grateful. I will be attending the Massachusetts Institute of Technology this fall, with the intent of pursuing a Chemical Engineering degree. With this degree, I hope to create global change by finding sustainable solutions to our current environmental crisis. At MIT, I am excited to not only grow academically, but become socially involved with the community and city. Thank you again for providing me with this scholarship. I am very excited to update you about my future.
Fall 2021 update:
My time here at MIT has been wonderful. The faculty, students, and resources have all been an asset to my success so far at this institution. The classes I am taking this semester include Single and Multivariable Calculus, Physics Mechanics, Chemistry, and Intro to Comparative Politics. While the classes are hard, the support that has been provided has been incredibly helpful. Outside of class, I am on the Track and Field team, Black Women’s Alliance, and I plan on doing scientific research soon. Finding a balance between work and personal life has been a challenge as well, but gradually I get better at finding that proper balance, which makes things all the more enjoyable. I would like to thank the WNHS-AA again for making this opportunity possible for me.
Take care, Morayo Oladipo
2021 Wheaton North High School Alumni Association scholarship recipient Alicia Felker
My name is Alicia Felker and I have been honored to be one of the recipients of the WNHS Alumni Association Scholarship! I am committed to Augustana College for not only my academic standings but also due to my commitment to the Track and Field team. I will also be trying out for the Cross Country team in the fall! I plan to not only be involved in sports but also the potential to join intramural sports during the fall, the Social Justice Club, Environmental Club, along the Political Science Club (similar to my current involvement in Youth and Government). I plan to be majoring in either Psychology or Environmental Sciences, yet I am still undecided for the most part. Originally in January was planning on majoring in Physics, however, I have now shifted to my potential Minor interests in becoming my Major interests. A potential double Major is also something I may be applying towards. Another opportunity I have just been accepted into for Augustana College is a Geology 4 credit trip to Wyoming to cover my natural sciences graduation requirement, which I am beyond ecstatic about. I am extremely excited fo this new step of life, as well as the help this financial scholarship may help with for my schooling at Augustana. Along with the opportunities listed, I plan on joining more clubs at Augustana as I hear more about them throughout the fall semester starting.
Fall 2021 update:
I would first off like to thank you all again for your gracious donation to bettering my learning at Augustana College. I am currently still planning on double majoring in Psychology and Environmental Sciences. Environmental Sciences is now specified to a concentration in Geology. I am doing incredible in my classes, as I have not yet received lower than a C for any of my classes or any of my exams. I am involved in the Sierra Club (which is an environmental club on campus that is proactive for the climate and for a cleaner future) as well as the Track and Field team! The campus here has proven that Augustana has been the best choice for a college, including my summer course through the Geology department. I attended the Geology-105 course to travel to the Rocky Mountains and study rocks for a full 4 credit class, and without this scholarship, I would have had to pay the full price. Socially and academically, I would say I am thriving in being on top of my work and reaching out when I need help. This scholarship gave me the opportunity to get a head start on my learning. Thank you all once again and I am happy to say I am excited to continue my education and bright future here at Augustana College!
2021 Wheaton North High School Alumni Association scholarship recipient Cam’ron Harper
I would like to say first that I am honored to have won this award scholarship and I can express my gratitude for this Thank you. It feels odd earning something like this I have never had one of these things before. My time at North here has been extremely influential in my development and my interest. I am unsure of the college I will be attending but I am aware of what I would like to study. Science. Science is my lifelong favorite thing and anything involving it will be of interest to me specifically in the exercise sciences and physical therapy fields. And while pursing degrees in those fields. I will still attempt to do at least one of the 3 sports I compete in here at Wheaton North. Thank you again for the scholarship you have given me.
Fall 2021 update:
I’m sorry I am getting to you so late there has been a lot going on recently. To give you an update on my studies they are going well. I am taking mostly gen Ed classes and I am still undecided in my major but I plan on majoring in exercise science hopefully. As I am doing that I am competing in the sport of the wrestling in winter and track in spring hopefully. The Wheaton alumni scholarship helped quite a bit. It paid for some prices for the cost of living on campus and made a few things a bit easier.
2021 Anita Brechtel Falcon Spirit Award recipient Grace Gannon
This year the Alumni Association has created the Anita Brechtel Falcon Spirit Award .The athletic department coaches and staff choose who receives the award based on the following:
During her tenure, Ms. Brechtel was a champion for all Wheaton North Programs, promoting the FALCON values of kindness, determination, respect and optimistic attitude. Coach Brechtel worked closely with the Faconettes and Pep Club in promoting school spirit and what it means to be a True Falcon. The Anita Brechtel Falcon Spirit Award is awarded to a Senior Female student that exemplifies these characteristics and her optimistic approach to life.
My name is Grace Gannon and I would like to start off by saying how thankful I am for the Wheaton North Alumni Association and to be the first recipient of this award. I am honored to be thought of in the way that Anita Brechtel was. This award showcases the importance of women in athletics and the value of school spirit. When I heard my name called after listening to the detailed description of what the award was all about, I was extremely flattered and thrilled to be receiving this honor. Wheaton North has been my home for the past 4 years and a community for me growing up. Having the opportunity to play any sport at North is not something to be taken for granted. I made some of my best memories while being on the volleyball team, learning valuable life lessons and staying physically active with girls who are now some of my best friends. The opportunity to create bonds while representing my school has been amazing, and I will always hold the Wheaton North volleyball program close to my heart. This fall I am headed to Miami University in Oxford, OH and I am beyond grateful that this scholarship is being put towards furthering my education. I am looking forward to getting involved on campus in many ways, just as I did at North, and can’t wait to start this next chapter of my life. I am so appreciative of this opportunity and the doors the WNHS-AA has opened for me, and I know I will always be a Falcon!
Fall 2021 update:
This first semester at Miami University has already been life changing! Through my cohort group in the Farmer School of Business, I’ve already made some great friends. I was accepted into MU’s Women in Business organization and joined the Fashion and Design Club, which both keep me busy with conferences, meetings, and social events. I have learned a lot about the importance of time management and independence. In my free time I enjoy working out at the student rec center as well as attending hockey and football games with my friends! I am excited to continue learning and growing through the college experience. I am so thankful for the Wheaton North Alumni Association and that they have helped open new doors for me through receiving the Anita Brechtel Falcon Spirit Award. It is an honor, and I am proud to represent my Falcon community!
2020 Scholarship Recipients
2020 Wheaton North High School Alumni Association scholarship recipient Walker Rickord
Walker Rickord who had this to say about receiving his scholarship:
2020 “Boost” scholarship recipient Julie Van Ro Par
This is what Julie had to say about receiving her award:
I remember how I felt when applying for this award. A few minutes into the scholarship, I was getting discouraged because I was telling myself I was never going to win a scholarship because of my competition. There are a lot of incredible writers who are applying as well, and I wasn’t sure I would be able to contend. I was unable to see myself winning this scholarship. My eyes wouldn’t let me see my potential; they were too blurry. I wanted to win this because I knew my mother would not be able to help me. She’s had enough to worry about. I just knew that I cannot rely on anyone but myself. I applied to this scholarship knowing that this was my only hope, but I did not know it was going to make such a big impact that I won this scholarship, I felt like I won the lottery. Winning this scholarship gave me hope and courage to have no fear in pursuing my future goals, future career, and it is not just for me. The fact that I won this award is because someone believes that I am capable of achieving big things and that I am worth investing in. Thank God I am not the one making the decisions and someone saw me despite the limits I put on myself. I always dreamed of helping others and becoming a teacher, which is why I want to pursue the path of an elementary teacher. This scholarship makes me believe that when help is given to those who need it, they are impacted to take bigger steps and to dream big. I believe that elementary teachers are one of the most important in shaping the mind of a child. I would like to impact the children to always dream big and extend their mind to the best of their abilities.
2020 Helm award recipient Garrett Horner
Dear Wheaton North Alumni Association,I want to say thank you so much for my scholarship award. I am very grateful!I plan to attend Carthage College in the fall and study Economics and play basketball. My head coach will be the same head coach my dad played for In college. I am very excited and hope the school year starts normally. My sister will be a senior At Carthage and I am looking forward to sharing one year of college together! This scholarship will help me reach my academic and athletic goals the next four years. I will work hard on and off the court to excel and be a leader at Carthage. Thank you again and I am so appreciative and honored to receive the Helm Scholarship!
Garrett Horner Wheaton North 2020 Carthage college 2024
2020 Vogel award recipient Nick Lemp
Nick Lemp (Brother of Ben Lemp 2019 Rick Vogel reciepent)
Plans: Attend Harper College in the fall and continue to wrestle
Dear WNHS Alumni Association,
My name is Nick Lemp and I am honored to have received the “Rick Vogel Wrestling Award.” I am very grateful for this scholarship, as it will help me as I pursue a degree in Fire Science. This award will not be put to waste and I plan on doing the absolute best I can to honor Rick Vogel and everything he represented. While at Harper College earning my degree, I will be a member of the wrestling team alongside my brother Ben Lemp. I have a lot of passion for a career in Fire Science and the sport of wrestling, so I can’t wait to get started! Thank you again for your generous scholarship.
Sincerely, Nick Lemp
2019 Scholarship Recipients
2019 Wheaton North High School Alumni Association scholarship recipient Calla Maher
Calla Maher who had this to say about receiving her scholarship:
This fall I will be attending Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. I hope to double major in economics and political science. After my undergraduate degree, I plan to attend law school and one day be an attorney. At Emory, I can’t wait to make new friends and start my classes this fall! I’m especially excited for Wonderful Wednesdays, a tradition at Emory in which the quad is filled with food tables and music every Wednesday and the students can relax in between classes. I’m also hoping to work with their after school tutoring program for elementary schoolers. I tutor now, and can’t wait to continue that at Emory. This scholarship allows me to attend a college that checks all of my boxes: academically, socially, and thanks to the Wheaton North alumni, financially. Thanks to this scholarship, I won’t have to spend my college years stressing over student loans and I can focus on my studies. Thank you all for helping me pay for my education! It truly means the world to me.
2019 Wheaton North High School Alumni Association scholarship recipient Margaret Allen
This is what Margaret had to say about receiving her award:
To the Wheaton North High School Alumni Association,
Hello! This is Margaret Allen, a winner of the 2019 Wheaton North Alumni Association Scholarship. To begin, I would like to thank you for allowing me the opportunity to achieve a higher education and successful future. I truly appreciate your contribution to my ensuing academic and professional careers. This fall I will be attending the University of Notre Dame, and I will be majoring in Biological Sciences with concentrations in Medical Neurobiology and Biomedical Sciences with a minor in Compassionate Care in Medicine and a pre-professional medical track. I am very excited for the opportunities this university will provide for me in academics, extracurriculars, and professional paths. I plan on getting involved in medical societies, continuing my volunteerism within community outreach programs in South Bend, and starting scientific research. I hope to direct my research towards the neurobiology field, and am looking forward to the multitude of scientific offerings that the university has. I am incredibly enthusiastic to start this new chapter. Once again, I want to personally thank you for enabling my education and choosing to support me in my continuous search for greater knowledge. I look forward to updating you with my future. Thank you for your assistance and time.
Yours truly, Margaret Allen
2019 “Boost” scholarship recipient Sarah Kamara
The Boost Scholarship is funded anonymously by a WNHS Alumni who wanted to give students a needed “boost” as they attend college. Sarah Kamara came to America at age five as an African refugee. She faced many challenges but with the help of a supportive host family as well as friends and the WNHS community her grades went from nearly failing to all A’s and B’s. Sarah has been accepted into the nursing program at George Williams College and this is what she had to say:
I have a dream of becoming a nurse. After much research, I determined that George Williams College in Lake Geneva was the right program for me.
The nursing program at GWC is small, which allows them to teach students in a simulated medical environment. They believe strongly in experiential learning, and for such a person that learns by doing as I do, this is an ideal learning environment for me.
I feel very fortunate to have been accepted into this excellent nursing program, and I am confident, as they are, of my future success.
Thank you, Sarah Kamara
2019 Helm Scholarship recipient Jacob Schauer
This scholarship is funded by one of our alumni. Here is what Jacob has to say:
The Helm Award Scholarship is important to me for many reasons. I am going to Wheaton College next year to play basketball, and my dad is the current Wheaton College Men’s Basketball coach. I understand the importance of people like Dick Helm and Randy Pfund and how their legacy has been passed down through generations of their own families and generations of Wheaton North and Wheaton College basketball figures. I understand what they mean to Wheaton North and Wheaton College. It was and will always be an honor to be a recipient of an award which is named after someone so important to my high school’s history and my future college’s history. Additionally, my experience in the Wheaton North basketball program was very memorable and had a great impact on my life. The award and the scholarship is very cool, but I hope one day the award can become a simple reminder of the amazing memories I had and the people and coaches that touched my life. I had an unforgettable experience in the program, and the award solidifies those memories. I am very honored to win the Helm Award Scholarship not only for the scholarship and recognition, but also for the people who came before me who made my Wheaton North Basketball experience possible in the first place.
Thank you!, Jacob Schauer
2019 Rick Vogel award scholarship recipient Ben Lemp
This scholarship is also funded by an alumni who wanted to honor our classmate Rick. Here is what Ben had to say:
I would like to start with how grateful I am to the coaches, family and friends who got me this far with their dedication to the sport of wrestling. Next I would like to deeply thank the Vogel family for letting me represent their legacy at the collegiate level. This scholarship I am receiving will go directly towards my college education. I am truly grateful to have this opportunity to represent Rick Vogel and all he valued. I will do my best to be the embodiment of him and his tremendous passion for wrestling and life. Once again I would like to thank you for your generosity and commitment to wrestling.
2018 Scholarship Recipients
2020 UPDATE on 2018 Helm Scholarship recipient Josh Sorenson who has been on a mission trip to Brazil for the last 2 years. Here is his statement:
For the last two years I have been serving the people in Brazil and learning Portuguese.This fall I will be attending Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. I plan to study Aerospace Engineering with minors in Business and Portuguese. I plan on trying out for the men’s basketball team in the fall and am looking forward to the entire college experience. I really appreciate and thank you for awarding me the Helm scholarship.
2018 Wheaton North High School Alumni Association scholarship recipient Benjamin Fefferman
. Benjamin Fefferman will be attending the University of Chicago starting this summer. He has already taken classes there (as an intern) and is well on his way to a future in medicinal chemistry or molecular engineering. As Ben explains his experience at WNHS:
“I am extremely appreciative of the learning environment that Wheaton North High School has provided for me! As a student who has been taking math and science classes at Wheaton North since middle school I was given support and guidance that allowed me to advance in my studies. I also owe some very special teachers and my academic counselor gratitude and admiration! My education and this scholarship from the Wheaton North High School Alumni Association will help me to further pursue my studies in the hopes of making serious contributions in STEM & medicine. I am a proud Wheaton North alumnus, and I am very grateful for WN and this scholarship!”
2018 “Boost” scholarship recipient Coral Gonzalez
Coral is an extraordinary young woman who has worked several jobs since entering WNHS to assist her family financially. The management at McDonalds was so impressed with her that they sent her to management training and (taking on additional class work and testing) she became certified. Throughout high school she worked several jobs and at one point would take a taxi to and from school after her mother and siblings moved out of the district. Today Coral intends to attend College of DuPage to fulfill her dream of a degree in Criminal Justice.
2018 “Boost” scholarship recipient Axel Muro Vasquez
Axel Muro Vasquez had this to say: Attending Wheaton North high school has meant a lot to me. It has been a life changing
experience. I attended an elementary school in Chicago before moving to Carol Stream. Attending that elementary school was the most unpleasant experience I have ever had. Most teachers would mistreat the students and the school was placed in a shady environment. Sometimes I look back and compare that elementary school to Wheaton North and I could see that I was lucky I had the opportunity to go to a good school. I’m glad I was able to attend a high school where the students don’t have to deal with gang related issues, where the students don’t have to be afraid to walk to school or where the teachers don’t mistreat the students. All the staff at Wheaton North are very kind and helpful. The teachers actually want you to succeed in life. I plan to go to College of Dupage for two years, then transfer to a different college. Coming from a family with very little money, this scholarship will be very helpful. With this scholarship I will be able to easily pay for a semester at College of Dupage, which will provide me with more time to save up for the rest of the semesters.”
2017 Scholarship Recipients
2017 Wheaton North High School Alumni Association scholarship recipient Warisha Aslam
We are excited and proud to introduce you to our 2016 scholarship recipients. Warisha Aslam was involved in so many activities as a student it isn’t possible to list all of them. She was a member of several Honor Societies (6 to be exact) as well as serving as an editor on the Falcon Flyer, membership on the speech team and a role in one act plays. Along with maintaining her honor level grades she volunteered as a tutor in various capacities. She still found time to also volunteer for the League of Women Voters and on political campaigns. She will be attending the University of Illinois – Urbana with the intention of getting a BA in Political Science. She hopes to attend law school and one day run for political office.
2018 update from Warisha:
I was the receipt of the Wheaton North High School Alumni Association Scholarship for the year 2017. As the receipts for 2018 are announced, I would like to once again ardently thank the Association for their generosity and encouragement, which allowed me to fervently seek my dream of scholarly excellence with vigor. I am currently a freshman at Purdue University with a Political Science major and Psychology minor. I aspire to pursue law. With each of my academic accomplishments, my gratitude towards the Alumni Association grows further. I hope that the Alumni Association will continue to support promising Wheaton North seniors in their pursuit of character development, purpose and progress.
2019 update from Warisha:
I was the Alumni Association’s Scholarship recipient for the year 2017. I am sharing an update to display the positive impact of your contributions in action. I am a rising Junior at Purdue University with a political science major and psychology minor. Over the last 2 years I have had the opportunity to conduct research regarding ableism’s impact on disability policy, which I presented at the Purdue Undergraduate Research Conference.
I am a member of Pi Sigma Alpha (National Political Science Honor Society), through which I presented my research on immigration policy at the Pi Sigma Alpha Research Conference in Washington DC. Additionally, I am a Dean’s Ambassador for the College of Liberal Arts, a Residential Advisor (RA) and I volunteer at an Alzheimer’s home. In the future, I aspire to attend law school with a focus in public policy and currently, I am working as a Congressional Intern for Senator Durbin’s Chicago Office. The encouragement which I received from the Alumni Association in the form of the scholarship is something that I carry with me everyday and remain thankful for. I hope the Association will continue to support our Falcons as they soar to new heights.
2017 Wheaton North High School Alumni Association scholarship recipient Hana Bayssa Tesfaye
Our second scholarship recipient is Hana Bayssa Tesfaye. Hana was active in track, cross country, speech and one act plays . She is a very active volunteers at her church where she works with the youth group and teaches the Amharic language. She will be attending DePaul University with the intention of receiving a degree in Computer Science. In looking back at her time at WNHS she stated she wishes she had focused less on grades and more on school and community involvement. She also stated that learning takes many forms, not always in the classroom. We are honored and proud to support such a bright and promising young lady.
2017 “Boost” scholarship recipient Juan Antonio Lopez
Several weeks ago we were contacted by an alumni who wanted to set up a $2500. scholarship to assist a student who wouldn’t qualify for other scholarships. The Alumni (who asked to remain anonymous) asked us to chose a senior who may have struggled in high school but a scholarship would boost their chances of continuing their education. One of our applicants fit the criteria. Juan Antonio Lopez shared that initially he was involved with a bad group of friends and didn’t take school seriously. An opportunity to visit some colleges opened his eyes to what he could achieve. Juan buckled down, starting meeting with a tutor and raised his GPA a full point in less that a year. He also expressed a desire to be a positive role model to his younger siblings. We are really excited to award the first “Boost” Scholarship to this fine young man.
2018 Update on Juan:
Last year an alumni contacted us to set up a new scholarship which we decided to call the “Boost” award. It is intended to assist students who would benefit from an additional boost to their academic pursuits. Our first recipient was Juan Lopez. The same anonymous donor has decided to donate an additional $2500. for Juan’s second year at College of DuPage. This is what Juan had to say about his well earned assistance.
“Well first off I’d like to thank you guys so much for this kind of opportunity. Not every student gets this kind of acknowledgement. This chance has gotten me far this year. It has opened many doors for me. And impacted me positively this year. This scholarship has helped me focus less on work, and give school my all. I appreciate you guys for helping me out. I hope I can help someone out with the same opportunity in the future. ”
Sincerely, Juan Lopez
2016 Scholarship Recipients
The WNHS-AA is VERY proud to introduce the recipients of the 2016 Alumni Scholarship. I’m sure you will agree with us that graduating senior William Marchese and Saniya Qadirare are very worthy students. Here are the bios that will introduce you to this very impressive young man and woman. Congratulations William and Saniya and thank you again to all who donated to make this scholarship possible.
Essay by: William Marchese
I am so honored to have received this scholarship. It will help me to afford Swarthmore College: the small liberal arts college in Philadelphia I will be attending next year. At Swarthmore, I plan on taking a wide variety of classes, and to pursue a double major in either art history, political science, sociology/anthropology, history, gender studies, or interpretation theory (two of these six!). Also, Swarthmore is distinctive for its rigorous honors program; honors seminars are capped at 8 students, go well past their official end time, and have external examinations conducted by scholars unaffiliated with the college. Challenging? Yes. Thrilling? Absolutely. I am honored to have the opportunities for such academic growth.
While not in class, I hope to be quite active on campus. I intend to join many of Swarthmore’s political groups—Democratic Socialists, Queer Alliance, Environmental Justice—as well as to write for the newspaper and intern at local campaigns and art museums. In general, I hope to embody theory and practice while in college, applying classroom discourse to my community and country.
Although I don’t have any specific plans for after college, I know that I want to improve people’s lives. Politically, this could be through conventional means like public office, or activism and organizing. Alternatively, I would also love to work in museums, journalism, or academia.
I could wax poetic about my future plans for ages, but what’s most important is that I say this: Thank you. I cannot wait to explore my academic passions and advocate my causes—your support has helped to make my collegiate dreams a reality. For this, I am profoundly grateful.
Best, William Marchese
Essay by: Saniya Qadir
Dear Wheaton North High School Alumni Members,
When I moved from Canada three years ago, I thought I was going to be all alone, having to start all over again. I did not know what the future would hold, who I would be, or how my life was going to change. I only knew one thing: I knew that I was ready and excited to learn and explore the world; I had this extreme passion and drive to learn. When Wheaton North High School opened her doors to me, she fostered this passion for learning and made me discover that I have the potential to change the world. I looked at every opportunity as a way to grow myself, give back to the community that gave me a new life when I first moved, and share my thirst for knowledge with others. As such, in my high school, I served as a Freshman Academic Advisor helping students make an easy transition to high school, an Ambassador, the Vice- President of Future Health Professionals, the Vice-President of the Mathematics Honors Society, and was involved in many other clubs and honor societies. I also made efforts to give back to my community, volunteering at the DuPage Convalescent Center and being a teaching assistant for the Mini Medical School at Edwards Plainfield Hospital. When I was recognized for my work in the Daily Herald Newspaper for the DuPage Leadership Team and received a VolunTeen Scholarship from the Convalescent Center, I knew I was not alone. I had the world’s support with me encouraging me to strive for the best.
I was accepted to the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine’s seven year Early Acceptance Program. This program guarantees my seat in medical school provided that I maintain the required GPA after my three years at Lewis University. Therefore, in the fall, I will be going to Lewis University. By pursuing an undergraduate pre-medical degree, I will continue to grow, carrying with me the lessons that I have learned. I want to use my education, knowledge, and experience to become a humble person and hopefully one day as a doctor, I want to use this to improve the lives of others. I am very excited for the future and I will never forget Wheaton North and the support they gave me. I will cherish and remember all the lessons that have gotten me thus far to strive and reach further. Thank you so much for your scholarship, you have gotten me one step closer to my dream!
Sincerely, Saniya Qadir
2015 Scholarship Recipient
Essay by: Marina Dimas
Dear Wheaton North High School Alumni Association Members,
2014 Scholarship Recipient
Essay by: Katherine Shikany
Wheaton North has been my home away from home for the past four years. In fact, there are many days during which I am at WNHS more than I am at my house! But there is nowhere I would rather be given its welcoming, opportunity-rich community that we have all been lucky to be a part of at some point in time.
First and foremost, my time at Wheaton North has been focused on academics. Wheaton North possesses a talented array of teachers that have taught me so much during the past four years. After taking many AP and honors classes, studying for hours on end, and working very hard, I am excited to report that I accomplished my goal of becoming a member of the Class of 2014’s Top 5%! Additionally, I am a member of three honor societies, an Illinois State-Scholar, and was voted English Student of the Month by the English Department. My favorite subjects include Biology, Spanish, English, and Psychology.
Throughout my Wheaton North experience I have been involved in various extracurricular activities. I am a four-year varsity competitor in cross country and soccer, two sports that I have participated in since elementary school. I was voted Most-Valuable-Athlete in cross country my sophomore, junior, and senior years, consistently performing well at meets and leading my teammates as a team captain my junior and senior years. Since freshman year, I have also been recognized as a member of the All-Conference Academic Team, a group comprised of athletes that excel in the classroom. Additionally, I write for our school’s newspaper, The Falcon Flyer, mentor new students with New Student Welcoming Committee, volunteer at school events through Falcon Ambassadors, and serve as the President of our school’s chapter of National Honor Society. Volunteering is very important to me, and I love helping the community whether it entails working with charities or leading Freshman Orientation. Tutoring students in Spanish is one of my favorite activities, for I can simultaneously give back to the community while preparing for studying Spanish in college to prepare for what I hope is my future in the medical field. This year, I co-founded a Future Health Professionals of America club at my school to educate peers about careers in the medical field. But don’t worry! Although I was voted Most-Involved (and Best Hair!) by my senior class, I somehow I still found some time to be a teenager (superfanning at football/basketball games, watching Netflix, and spending time with family and friends). Two of my favorite moments at Wheaton North were rushing Rexilius Field after beating Wheaton-Warrenville South in football in 2013 and being crowned Homecoming Queen!
In the fall, I will be attending Washington University in St. Louis to study Biology and Spanish as a Pre-Med student. Sometimes I have to pinch myself! I feel extremely blessed to be able to attend one of the strongest universities in the nation. I am very excited to venture out into the world outside of Wheaton, but I will forever cherish the influence and memories of Wheaton North.