Date: June 18, 2009
Contact: Lindsay Gladstone
Governors State University
Phone: (708) 534-7090
Fax: (708) 534-8399
For Immediate Release
University Park, IL, June 18, 2009 – Two graduating seniors from area high schools will be attending universities in the fall with the assistance of scholarships they earned as a result of their hard work and perseverance and the help of Governors State University’s Project EXCEL Upward Bound program.
DeAndrea Ingram, a graduate of Rich East High School, and Tyrone Landingham, a Bloom Trail graduate, are two of only 300 recipients nationwide of $20,000 scholarships from the Michael and Susan Dell Foundation. The scholarships are given to deserving first-generation college students who participated in a college readiness program and maintained exceptional academic records.
Ingram and Landingham participated in Upward Bound. The program, funded by the U.S. Department of Education, prepares qualified high school students for college entrance and academic success.
“The program aims to take high school students and move them forward on the path to college. We are not just helping them graduate from high school, we are preparing them to succeed in college,” explained Terri Boles, Curriculum Specialist with Upward Bound.
Through counseling, tutoring, workshops, and activities, students in Upward Bound learn necessary skills and gain important experiences. Currently, the program helps 60 students from Bloom Trail, Crete-Monee, and Rich East High schools. Students may join the program as early as freshmen and attend afterschool tutoring sessions and summer programs through graduation. They also have the opportunity to visit colleges and universities on trips sponsored by Upward Bound.
Landingham, of Sauk Village, will attend Howard University in Washington, D.C., which he visited on an Upward Bound trip. “Upward Bound opened my eyes up. I was naïve about the college experience. It showed me that I did not have to be the son of a doctor or a lawyer to go to college. I could be a first generation college student and be just as successful.”
Ingram, who recently moved from Park Forest to Merrillville, Indiana, agrees. “Upward Bound kept telling us what we needed to do to succeed. They kept me motivated and helped me so much. They helped me find scholarships and guided me. They were like a second parent to me.”
In the fall, Ingram will attend Eastern Michigan University and study social work. Landingham plans to major in a physician’s assistant program at Howard.
“I am so proud of my son,” said Landingham’s mother, Tracy. “He is going to go get whatever he wants. All of the family is so proud.”