Golden Apple announces 2018 scholars

Staff Report

CHICAGO – Golden Apple, a leading Illinois nonprofit committed to developing great teachers, proudly announces the induction of the 2018 class of the Golden Apple Scholars of Illinois.  The 2018 scholars include 229 dynamic young people who have chosen to dedicate themselves to a future career teaching students in Illinois schools-of-need.   

The scholars program is uniquely designed to prepare future teachers to thrive in the most challenging school environments where more resilient teachers are desperately needed. In response, this year marks the fourth consecutive year that Golden Apple has accepted more than 200 scholars into the program, a program which has doubled in size over the past five years.  

While pursuing their degree in teaching, scholars participate in Summer Institute experiences in which they spend time working directly with students, have opportunities to reflect on their teaching practice, and receive instruction and mentorship from Award-winning Golden Apple teachers.

This year, more than 800 scholars will participate in these institutes, preparing to serve thousands of Illinois students upon their graduation.  Within these Summer Institutes, scholars will acquire more than two times the classroom teaching experience garnered by traditionally-prepared teachers. Importantly, Golden Apple’s support continues into the first years of teaching with comprehensive on-site mentoring.  

Golden Apple scholars represent a diverse group of high-achieving young people from across the state of Illinois with more than 1/2 being first-generation college students.  Newly-inducted 2018 scholars maintained nearly a 4.0 average weighted high school GPA and over a 3.5 college GPA.

Golden Apple is thrilled to welcome the high-achieving 2018 class of scholars, who from diverse backgrounds and circumstance, will grow to guide underserved students from the most challenging environments to long-term success,” said Alicia Winckler, president and CEO of Golden Apple. “In response to the urgent demand for qualified teachers, the scholars program is poised to deliver exponential growth to meet that need. We are proud to prepare highly effective teachers for schools-of-need.”

The scholars program improves persistence and graduation rates among participants profoundly.  In addition, the program has been shown to have a significant impact on workforce development by helping low-income and underrepresented students gain necessary skill development for a lasting career in teaching – evidenced by the over 80 percent who begin teaching who stay in teaching for more than five years. R.

Golden Apple Scholars Class of 2018

Name Hometown University
Marielle Abalos Onarga Eastern Illinois University
Weston Acampora Lake Forest University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Angela Addante Addison Lake Forest College
Joanna Alvord Flora Olivet Nazarene University
John Anderlik McHenry Illinois State University
Jessica Anderson Argenta Eastern Illinois University
Fabiola Angulo-Gonzalez Chicago Saint Xavier University
Alyssa Anselmini Addison Illinois State University
Jordan Bartels Braceville Augustana College
Emily Bartle Blue Island Bradley University
Benjamin Bedell Tinley Park Aurora University
Lee Bell Aurora Northern Illinois University
Vanessa Bello Montgomery University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Ireland Binkowski Channahon Eastern Illinois University
Emily Blanchard Downers Grove Loyola University Chicago
Emily Blanke Barrington University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Kaylee Borja West Chicago North Central College
Evadne Bowlin Matteson Northern Illinois University
Fernando Bravo Garcia Vernon Hills Augustana College
Clarice Brown East Moline Augustana College
Keegan Brown Woodhull Monmouth College
Laura Burkett Gilberts Northern Illinois University
Abigail Byrnside O’Fallon Illinois State University
Gianna Cairo Berwyn University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Paula Katrina Camaya Skokie Loyola University Camaya
Maria Campbell Naperville University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Katie Carranza Round Lake Beach Illinois State University
Melissa Castillo Chicago University of Illinois at Chicago
Shannon Cavins Plainfield Illinois State University
Cynthia Cisneros Chicago National Louis University
Jillian Clifton Chatham Augustana College
Shepherd Coventon Biggsville Monmouth College
Quincy Cowell Rolling Meadows Northwestern University
Taylor Crew Colona Western Illinois University
Nina Crowley Cullom Augustana College
Breanna Cruz Burbank Illinois State University
Rosalia Cucinella Addison Elmhurst College
Diamond Dadej Chicago University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Kelly Damann Mascoutah McKendree University
Danielle Daujatas Worth Trinity Christian College
Daniel De La Torre Bensenville University of Illinois at Chicago
Nicole DeCastris Aurora Illinois State University
Ryan Deetz Decatur Illinois State University
Isabella Dehmlow Naperville Loyola University Chicago
Steffi Delgado Hoffman Estates Northern Illinois University
Max DiPasquale Belleville Millikin University
Morgan-Marie Donohue Batavia North Central College
John Downey Lockport Knox College
Dominik Downs Chicago DePaul University
Rachel Edwards Murrayville Quincy University
Sophie Elder Chicago Loyola University Chicago
Katherine Elvery Lombard Southern Illinois University – Carbondale
Abbie Eveland Canton Illinois State University
Sarah Fisher Mapleton Augustana College
Emma Fister Buffalo Grove Bradley University
Lidia Flores Berwyn Northern Illinois University
Luis Flores Harvard Vandercook College of Music
Tea Floyd Chicago Columbia College Chicago
Ana Galan Chicago The School of The Art Institute
Laila Galecki Bensenville Loyola University Chicago
Elizabeth Gallegos Alsip University of Illinois at Chicago
Elizabeth Galvez Chicago University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Nelson Garcia Des Plaines University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Mariah Garzee Bushnell Monmouth College
Emma Germann Watseka Elmhurst College
Elizabeth Gilmore Springfield Illinois State University
Lesly Gonzalez Chicago University of Illinois at Chicago
Vanessa Gonzalez Chicago Northeastern Illinois University
Courtney Gordon Chicago University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Madison Graham Palmyra Illinois State University
Layne Gregory Pittsfield Illinois College
Jose Guarda Waukegan National Louis University
Elise Guillen Chicago University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Liliana Gutierrez Chicago Northeastern Illinois University
Vanessa Guzman Chicago Loyola University Chicago
Emily Halik Crystal Lake Illinois State University
Emma Harris Streator MacMurray College
Wendy Hegbom Rockford Rockford University
Sophie Henderson Carbondale Bradley University
Grace Herb St.Charles University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Uriel Hernandez Carpentersville



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