MOUNT GREENWOOD — Five students from four area high schools have been named Golden Apple Scholars of Illinois — a program that provides undergraduate tuition assistance to future teachers.
Local winners include: Anna Senteno of Marist High School, Kapri Dowdell of Morgan Park High School, Elizabeth Cerullo of Queen of Peace High School as well as Audrey Johnson and Leah Wideman both of the Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences.
In all, 234 aspiring teachers were named Golden Apple scholars Aug. 12 at North Central College in suburban Naperville.
The Golden Apple Scholars receive financial aid, academic support and professional development in exchange for agreeing to teach in a school-of-need in Illinois for five years after college graduation.
Scholars are recruited from the communities in which they return to serve. More than 650,000 students in Illinois have been taught by one of the Golden Apple Scholars since 1989. Since its inception in 1989, the program has grown to include nearly 2,000 statewide participants.
“We congratulate the class of 2017 Golden Apple Scholars as they embark on an exciting journey to become exceptional teachers and improve the educational outcomes for students in challenging school settings in Illinois,” said Dominic Belmonte, Golden Apple's chief executive officer.