NUEA Awards Four Scholarships

2020 Scholarship Winners

Four students from the Naperville area received scholarships from the Naperville Unit Education Association (NUEA) in the amount of $1500 each. The NUEA annually gives three scholarships to high school seniors and one scholarship to a college undergraduate who plans on pursuing an education-related field. All applicants must be children of NUEA members.  Scholarships are awarded based on extracurricular participation and contributions to the community.

The 2020 scholarship recipients are Maria Gabrielli from Naperville Central High School, Kathryn Southon from Naperville Central High School, Mordecai Park from Naperville Central High School, and Alexis Henz from North Central College.

The NUEA scholarships were created by certified staff in District 203 to recognize outstanding contributions among area high school seniors and college undergraduates. The scholarships are funded by member dues and represent a small portion of the local support NUEA provides the community through scholarships, volunteerism, and charitable giving.

Maria will be attending Loyola University this fall with a major in Global Education Policy. Maria’s participation on the J. Kyle Braid Experimental Education Foundation had a profound influence on her choice of major. The Foundation helps empower young adults to make positive and healthy decisions while fostering kindness and harmony among others. Maria was also a member of the LINK Crew, the National Honor Society, and the Adapted PE/Art Peer program. Also a strong athlete, Maria was the Captain of the Water Polo Team and the Swim Team at NCHS.   

Kathryn is planning to attend the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana this fall in the Campus Honors Program with a major in Chemical Engineering. At NCHS, she has been involved in Class Council, Medical Club, LINK Crew, National Honor Society, and Spanish Honor Society. Her athletic activities include indoor and outdoor track and field, cross country, and gymnastics. Outside of school, Kathryn is heavily involved with Girl Scouts and volunteers with the Naperville Library Summer Reading Program.

Mordecai will be attending Marquette University in the fall with a major in Exercise Science, which is a component of the Doctor of Physical Therapy program. Mordecai is heavily invested in the band and in his church. As a musician, Mordecai performed in the Steel Pan Ensemble, Drumshow, Band, Marching Band, the musical, and gave percussion lessons. He also was a church nursery volunteer, a church worship team member, a Vacation Bible School volunteer, and a Manna volunteer for Breakthrough Urban Ministries. He completed a mission trip, but still found time to participate in the National Honors Society and intermural basketball.  

Alexis has been focusing on Elementary Education while a student at NCC. As a senior in high school, she completed a job-shadowing program at the 4th grade level, which helped inspire her to pursue teaching. Alexis has taught and observed in the classroom for over 150 hours the last 3 years in grades 1st, 3rd, and 5th. Last summer, she also volunteered at the library for their summer reading program and helped lead a Sign Language Story Time.  She will complete another field experience this fall before completing student teaching in Fall 2021.