D211 Post: Palatine Booster Club Announces 2020-2021 Scholarships

The Palatine High School Booster Club has announced that they are accepting applications for their 47th annual scholarship program.  The program will award scholarships of $1,000 to approximately 14 members of the Palatine High School Class of 2021.  

To qualify for the scholarship, the applicants must be attending either community college, a 4-year college or university, or a certified trade or vocational school and must have a minimum 2.0 grade point average.  If an applicant does not meet the GPA requirement, but has extenuating circumstances, they are encouraged to apply and include a statement explaining their situation.  All applications must be submitted to Marla Morrissey in the PHS main office no later than 3:45 p.m., March 15, 2021.

The booster club’s scholarship committee stated that they are looking for students who have demonstrated outstanding leadership, academic excellence, and have a history of service and volunteerism both at PHS and surrounding community.  

Among this year’s scholarships are the Charlotte M. and Robert  C. Donahue Millennium Scholarship, which as donated by Palatine alumni Andy and Patrick Donahue in honor of their late parents; the Legacy Scholarship, which was donated by the Palatine High School Class of 1979; and 12 scholarships which have been named in honor of Mr. Fred Zajonc, a long time community leader, village trustee, and long-time member of the Palatine Booster Club.

For more information and to download the application visit https://tinyurl.com/PHSBoosterScholarship2021.

D211 Post: Schaumburg Senior Crowned National American Miss Illinois Teen

            Schaumburg High School senior Courtney Larsen has been competing in pageants for nearly a decade.  On September 26, she achieved a milestone when she was named the 2020 National American Miss Illinois Teen.

            Larsen said she was shocked when announcement had been made.

            “There were definitely tears shed,” she said.  “I have never won a title before.  I was so thrilled that I had finally accomplished my goal. I didn’t know how else to filter my emotions but to just cry.”

            Due to COVID-19, this year’s pageant was handled remotely.  Competitors submitted a resume, a video introduction, and an essay about a charity of their choice.  Competitors then conducted an interview with a judge over Zoom.  Larsen said the charity she chose to focus on was Life Goes On.

            Each year, National American Miss Illinois Teen chooses a cause they will champion over the course of their reign.  Larsen chose organ donation as her cause.  She said it is a cause which has a personal connection.

            “I’m very passionate about organ donation because my grandfather has been on the wait list for a kidney for the past six years,” she said.  “Plus, since getting my driver’s license, I have heard a lot of strange misconceptions from my friends as they got theirs.  Since then, I have become very passionate about teaching people what it means to save a life or eight through organ donation.”

            She added that one of the biggest misconceptions she has heard was that signing up meant the donor had to give up an organ immediately. 

            “I think it’s important to understand that you will not give up anything until you pass away,” she said. 

            Larsen’s reign will run through July 2021, during which she will attend the national competition, perform hours of community service, and attend charity events and parades.

            While the title does include a scholarship, Larsen said there are many benefits to the title.

            “This will also look great on my college admissions essay,” she said.  “But the biggest thing is that I will be able to meet other girls from around the country who are motivated to make a huge impact in their communities and the world.  Being around them, I feel, will inspire me to do more as well.”

            Larsen said that she would encourage girls and women of any age to participate in pageants.

            “No matter your age, pageants will benefit you,” she said.  “I believe they develop skills every woman needs to know growing up.  I didn’t know I enjoyed public speaking before I did pageants.  They also help build confidence that you will always use in future careers.”

            Larsen will attend the National American Miss competition in November.  Following graduation, she plans to attend Iowa State University where she will major in fashion design. 

            To learn more about organ donation visit lifegoeson.com.

D211 Post: PHS Booster Announces Club 2019-2020 Scholarships

The PHS Pirate Booster Club is accepting applications for its 46th annual Scholarship Program starting January 13, 2020. These scholarships will be awarded to deserving members of the Palatine High School graduating class of 2020 wishing to further their education. Up to 14 graduating seniors may receive a $1,000 scholarship.

Twelve of these scholarships are named in honor of Fred Zajonc. Mr. Zajonc was a community leader, a village trustee, and long-time member and past president of the Booster Club who worked tirelessly to generate parent and community support of Palatine High School.

The thirteenth scholarship, the “Charlotte M. and Robert C. Donahue Millennium Scholarship” was donated by PHS alumni, Andy and Patrick Donahue, in honor of their parents, the late Charlotte and Robert Donahue.

This year an additional scholarship will be offered by the PHS Graduating Class of 1979. The “Legacy Scholarship” will follow the same selection criteria as the Booster and Millennium scholarships.

Completed applications must be turned in to Marla Morrissey in the main office at PHS by 3:45pm on Monday, March 16, 2020.

Applicant Requirements

Must be attending a 4-year college/university, 2-year community college or a certified trade/vocational school

Minimum 2.0 GPA. If an applicant has less than a 2.0 average, but has extenuating circumstances, please submit the completed application along with a separate typed statement of explanation.

Selection Criteria

The scholarship committee is looking for students who have demonstrated outstanding leadership, academic excellence, service, and volunteerism at Palatine High School and in the community.

More information and the applications can be found at: https://tinyurl.com/PHSBoosterScholarship2020

D211 Post: Conant Student Among Top 30 in Breakthrough Junior Challenge

            James B. Conant High School senior Krisha Jivani is competing in a world-wide competition which sees the winner receive a $250,000 scholarship.  The competition, called the Breakthrough Junior Challenge, has students create a three-minute video covering a math or science topic.

            Jivani, who was one of nearly 11,000 applicants, created a video describing magnetic levitation and superconductors.  She said she chose this topic as it was something she found difficult.

            “Something that was really hard for me in physics was magnetism,” she said.  “Everything online shows everything in straight lines.  I wanted to show how it would be if you were to see it with the circular lines as it actually is.”

            Jivani’s entry has proceeded through multiple levels from peer-to-peer review to committee reviews which picks the top 30 entries.  Those entries face-off in the popular vote challenge where the videos are voted by likes and shares on Breakthrough’s Facebook page.  Jivani’s video was ultimately selected as one of the 30 videos where voting will close on September 20.

            According to Jivani, the top video per region as well as the top overall video will be posted to Breakthrough’s website and will be reviewed by the organization to select the overall winner. The winner will receive a $250,000 scholarship, as well as $50,000 for the applicant’s math or science teacher, and a $100,000 Breakthrough science lab. 

            To vote for Jivani’s video, click the link.  Votes are tabulated by both likes and shares of the video on Breakthrough’s Facebook page.

37 District 211 Students Named 2016 Finalists in National Merit Scholarship Competition

National MeritTownship High School District 211 has 37 students that were named finalists in the 2016 National Merit Scholarship Competition. Judges will determine winners based on which finalists have the strongest combination of academic skills and achievements, extracurricular accomplishments, and potential for success in rigorous college studies. Roughly half of all finalists in the nation will be awarded scholarships.


Conant High School

Shriram Chennakesavalu

Haricharan Cheruvu

Armaan Goyal

Jonathan Meir

Nikhil Modak

Anna Styrczula

Lisa Yang


Fremd High School

Julia Cai

Amy Chen

Daniel Classon

Melinda Coleman

Chloe David

James Feng

Bissem Singh Gill

Jiamin Huang

Abigail Iuorio

Chiranth Kishore

Eshwar Kishore

Alexander Lloyd Knox

Shijie Li

Jessica Lu

Rohan Menon

Ann Rajan

Varshini Ramanathan

Kevin Stevens

Anusha Thotakura

Daniel Tokarz

Daniel Xu

Nathan Xu

Xuemeng Yin

Annie Zheng


Schaumburg High School

Srinivas Cherukuri


Palatine High School

Kyle Jannak-Huang

Ryan Jannak-Huang

Bryan Lu


Hoffman Estates High School

Shreyas Gandlur

Tara Ramanathan

Conant High School Senior Awarded a National Merit Scholarship

Conant High school senior Mariah Ghant

Conant High school senior Mariah Ghant

A senior at Conant High School recently received an award for academic achievements from the National Merit Scholarship Corporation, and is the only student representing Township High School District 211 for this award.

Mariah Ghant was one of 800 outstanding black American high school seniors who earned a $2,500 Achievement Scholarship award through the National Achievement Scholarship Program. These awards, totaling more than $2 million, are financed by grants from 34 corporate organizations and professional associations, and by the not-for-profit National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

The National Achievement Scholarship Program is a privately financed academic competition established in 1964 specifically to honor scholastically talented black youth and to provide scholarships to a substantial number of the most outstanding participants in each annual competition.

The Achievement Scholar designees include 700 recipients of National Achievement $2,500 Scholarships. All students who advanced to the Finalist level in the
2013 competition were considered for these single-payment scholarships, which were awarded on a regional representation basis in proportion to the population of black Americans in each geographic region.

More than 160,000 students entered the 2013 National Achievement Scholarship Program by requesting consideration in the competition when they took the 2011 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) as high school juniors. In September 2012, approximately 1,600 of the highest scorers were named Semifinalists on a regional representation basis. To continue in the competition, Semifinalists had to fulfill requirements for Finalist standing, which included having a record of consistently high academic performance, being endorsed and recommended by an official from their high school, earning SAT scores that confirmed their PSAT/NMSQT performance, and writing an essay.

From the Semifinalist pool, some 1,300 advanced to the Finalist level, and the 800 National Achievement Scholarship winners were selected from this group of outstanding students. Achievement Scholar awardees are Finalist candidates judged to have the strongest record of accomplishments and greatest potential for academic success in college.

For more information on the scholarship, please visit the organization’s website.

Festival with Conant, Schaumburg, and Hoffman Estates High Schools Encourages Healthy Lifestyles

Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White attended the event. From left to right: Maddie Stinger (Senior), Nicole Erickson (Senior), Rasion Bailey (Junior) , Secretary of State Jesse White, Nicole Zghaib (Senior) and Kyouka Bailey (Senior).

In an effort to remind individuals to drive responsibly and the dangers of getting behind the wheel while intoxicated, three District 211 schools recently hosted a music and dance festival to raise funds toward Operation Snowball groups.

Schaumburg High School, Hoffman Estates High School, and Conant High School recently joined together with Schaumburg-based nonprofit organization Alliance Against Intoxicated Motorists (AAIM) at Schaumburg High School. Several student groups participated in the event and had informational tables with materials on several topics for students’ well-being.

Operation Snowball is an organization that encourages students to make responsible decisions regarding healthy lifestyle choices, leadership and communications skills, and maintaining a drug-free life. Funds were used to benefit each of the schools Operation Snowball clubs, and AAIM. Additionally, funds went toward the John Kreslin Scholarship fund at Schaumburg High School, which was formed after Kreslin lost his life in a drunken-driving accident during his sophomore year of college.

Although the largest theme was drunken driving prevention, one group that was present was Conant High School’s HEROES (Helping Everyone Respect Others and Expect Safety). They joined the efforts and presented information about issues of bullying awareness and prevention. Students hosted a Jeopardy game and had the opportunity to meet Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White.

Overall, students received information to help them maintain positive, healthy lifestyles. Students and guests of the event were able to participate in free salsa and hip-hop dance lessons, and there also was a dance competition. The community and wellness fair allowed people to participate in yoga, face painting, salon services, informational sessions, and more.

For more information on AAIM or the John Kreslin Scholarship, please visit the websites here: AAIM and JonKreslin.com