October 22, 2021
Illinois-based utility ComEd – which covers 70 percent of the state – is promoting equity in higher education and STEM programs by providing scholarships that fill the tuition gap not covered by financial aid to 10 Chicagoland students pursuing engineering. These students comprise the 2021 ComEd Scholars class and attend either Illinois Institute of Technology (Illinois Tech) or University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC).
“ComEd is proud to help deserving students from underserved communities achieve their higher education goals,” said Michelle Blaise, ComEd’s Senior VP/Technical Services and an Illinois Tech mechanical engineering alumna. “The past year has been incredibly difficult. We hope that our support can enable these wonderful students and leaders of the future to receive the education necessary to create innovative change in their fields and inspire their communities and future generations to come.”
The ComEd Scholars program provides scholarships to students pursuing degrees in STEM that cover education-related costs that exceed financial aid. ComEd Scholars are also granted the opportunity to interview for internships at ComEd and its parent company, Exelon, and are encouraged to participate in a mentorship program with ComEd engineers. Since the inception of the ComEd Scholars program in 2019, 22 students have been awarded support.
To be eligible for the program, students must be recommended by their respective schools. Each school’s financial aid office, in partnership with academic advisors and ComEd, then identifies high-performing students facing financial burdens in continuing the student’s education. Prospective recipients then submit a personal statement, financial-aid application, and school transcripts.
“For the third year in a row, ComEd continues to expand educational access and opportunities for students eager to impact the future and advance technology for all,” said Raj Echambadi, President of Illinois Tech. “ComEd’s substantial commitment will allow these Illinois Tech scholars to serve as purpose-driven innovators and, ultimately, the tech leaders of the future.”
“ComEd’s long-term commitment to UIC students and their academic endeavors, particularly through these unprecedented times, exemplifies what it means to create equitable pathways for the next generation of leaders and change makers in the field of engineering,” added UIC CHANCE Director Kendal Parker.
The 2021 ComEd Scholars are:
Eduardo David Calix-Ortiz – a third-year student from Chicago’s Gage Park neighborhood, pursuing a degree in electrical engineering and computer engineering at Illinois Tech
Joshua Coburn – a second-year student from Chicago’s Edgewater neighborhood, pursuing a degree in mechanical engineering at Illinois Tech
Joshua Evan Campbell – a second-year student from Chicago’s Jeffery Manor neighborhood, pursuing a degree in computer engineering at UIC
Leah Davis – a first-year student from Chicago’s Near West Side neighborhood, pursuing a degree in civil engineering at UIC
Chenille Lawrence – a second-year student from Chicago’s Bronzeville neighborhood, pursuing a degree in computer science at UIC
Camren McGee – a second-year student from Chicago’s South Shore neighborhood, pursuing a degree in industrial engineering at UIC
Rashaun Muhammad – a third-year student from Dolton, Ill., pursuing a degree in industrial engineering at UIC
Ramon Orozco – a third-year student from Lyons, Ill., pursuing a degree in civil engineering at UIC
Cristobal Soto – a first-year student from Maywood, Ill., pursuing a degree in mechanical engineering at UIC
Juliana Soto – a first-year student from Maywood, Ill., pursuing a degree in mechanical engineering at UIC