Every year the Maine 207 Foundation awards one scholarship at each of the three District 207 High Schools to a graduating senior who has served as a tutor in their school’s peer tutoring program. The Foundation is pleased to announce the recipients of these scholarships for the 2020-2021 school year. Nelly Hadlaw from Maine South, Nell Jakoniuk from Maine West, and Prapti Patel from Maine East all demonstrated their dedication to peer tutoring, while also being involved in a number of other extra curricular activities.
Nelly Hadlaw - Maine South
Nelly was a student tutor throughout her four years at Maine South. She began tutoring in the math lab during freshman year and when she saw how students were benefiting from her help she made it her mission to continue tutoring for all four years. In addition to tutoring and maintaining a rigorous course load, Nelly was a member of the swim team. Nelly has a particular interest in computer science, which combined with her entrepreneurial spirit, led her to develop a virtual tutoring platform during the Covid-19 pandemic. This program is now expanding to all three District 207 high schools and beyond. Nelly will continue her passion for computer science when she attends Carnegie Mellon in the fall.
Nell Jakoniuk - Maine West
Nell participated in Maine West’s COACH tutoring program for three years. While she enjoyed helping other students learn and make improvements in their study skills, the experience as a tutor led Nell to feel more confident in her own education, communication skills, and her ability to support others. During her time at Maine West, Nell participated in a variety of activities such as Key Club, National Honor Society and the school’s Kpop/Hip Hop Dance Group. She also discovered her intrinsic passion for giving back through community service projects, which she looks forward to continuing beyond high school. Next year, Nell will begin her studies in Industrial Design at University of Illinois Urbana Champaign.
Prapti Patel - Maine East
Prapti was a tutor in Maine East’s COACH tutoring program for five semesters. During this time, she enjoyed connecting with students and giving them a safe and comfortable environment in which to ask questions. Being a tutor helped Prapti understand how she could use her strengths to have an impact on others. In addition to tutoring, Prapti participated in a number of other activities while at Maine East, including Feminist Club, Students Organized Against Racism, National Honor Society, and Orchestra. She also was a student in the school’s gifted Lyceum program. Prapti hopes to major in Sociology and pursue a pre-medicine path while attending University of Illinois Chicago honors college.
Since 1999, the Maine 207 Foundation has supported peer-to-peer tutoring programs to provide assistance to students needing extra academic help. We’ve awarded over $40,000 in scholarships to graduating peer tutors who plan to continue their educations after high school. A highlight of the 2019-2020 year was adding Maine South to the scholarship program. This spring we distributed $4,000 to four accomplished, well-deserving seniors: Olivia Bitcoin from Maine West, Omar Farrag from Maine South, and Angela Righi and Riya Patel from Maine East.
The peer-to-peer aspect of the tutoring program is highly regarded by teachers; as one stated, “Very frequently, ... tutors have taken the exact same course(s) that the tutoree needs help with and can consequently offer guidance from their own personal experience, offering studying tips, etc.”
Student tutors apply for the Foundation scholarships during the spring of their senior year. The application process requires a teacher recommendation and a personal statement about their tutoring experiences, their activities at school and within the community, and their post high school goals.
Providing long-lasting benefits
Students appreciate the benefit of having served as tutors as they move to the next chapter of their lives. As one student noted, “Not only has tutoring allowed me to discover how much I love to help other people learn, but it also made me a better student and learner.” The skills honed as tutors in the areas of leadership, communication, and responsibility will serve these students well throughout their lives.
If you are interested in supporting scholarships through the Foundation, please consider making a directed donation through our website -- donate today.
Golden Apple Award-winning Maine East biology teacher Judy Tyler has taken her Gifted Lyceum students on service trips as far away as New Orleans to participate in hurricane reconstruction, and as close by as downtown Chicago, where her students provided meals for The Night Ministry. Her students have been instructed in dry-walling and simple carpentry-and have grown from the opportunity to learn about the needs of those they served.
The Maine 207 Foundation has been a major underwriter for each of Ms. Tyler’s trips since 2006, and supported her change of plans when her service trip to Detroit was cancelled this summer due to COVID-19. Not to be deterred, the Lyceum students accomplished a successful food drive for the Maine Township Food Pantry and packed 150 meals for The Night Ministry. Please take a look at the Lyceum group in Action.