-The Department of Children and Family Services' Director, Jess McDonald,
along with Connie Payton, today awarded 48 educational scholarships to graduating
students in state care during a lunch at Johnny D's Restaurant in Schaumburg.
The lunch was sponsored by The Walter Payton Foundation.
"We are very proud of each recipient," said Director McDonald.
"Their hard work and dedication to educational success during a difficult
time in their lives is proof that each scholarship recipient is ready for
the independence and success that lies ahead."
of Children and Family Services annually provides scholarships to youth
who are currently under guardianship of the Department or who have left
the Department's guardianship through adoption or private guardianship
arrangements. The students are chosen based on scholastic aptitude, academic
rank, citizenship, personal character and community involvement.
the scholarship is just one of life's many successes for these 48 students,"
said Director McDonald. "I anticipate they will take the strengths
and achievements they have realized thus far and apply them to life's
challenges. Their continued use of successful strategies - the ability
to plan, write, study and meet deadlines - will serve them well in achieving
the goals they set. I congratulate all of them."
recipients receive up to four consecutive years of tuition and academic
fee waivers to be used at participating Illinois State Universities, a
$445 monthly stipend and a medical card. In addition, several Illinois
legislators have donated Legislative Scholarships to be awarded to DCFS
wards residing in specific legislative districts.
Scholarship Program began in 1964 with the awarding of four scholarships.
It has now assisted more than 600 students with their college education.
Students can obtain scholarship applications and additional information
about the DCFS Scholarship Program through their caseworkers.
recipients will receive a waiver of tuition and fees if they attend any
of the following Illinois State Universities: