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Impact Report 2018: Equity And Excellence, Illinois Mathematics And Science Academy Mar 2018

Impact Report 2018: Equity And Excellence, Illinois Mathematics And Science Academy

Impact Reports

For over 30 years, the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy (IMSA) has pioneered the future of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education through its two legislative charges: 1) to provide a uniquely challenging education for students talented in the areas of mathematics and science; and 2) to stimulate further excellence for all Illinois schools in mathematics and science. IMSA champions these goals through:

  • Residential education: Helping talented 10th-12th graders representing over 93% of Illinois counties to date reach their fullest potential.
  • Student and educator outreach: Leading the charge to continually innovate K-12 STEM education, creating a strong and diverse ...


Recipient Of The 2017 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Julie Comerford '98 Mar 2017

Recipient Of The 2017 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Julie Comerford '98

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Dr. Comerford is Assistant Professor in the Department of Astrophysical and Planetary Sciences at the University of Colorado, Boulder, where she works on observations of kpc-scale separation dual supermassive black holes in merger-remnant galaxies. These objects are observable when one or both of the supermassive black holes accrete gas as active galactic nuclei (AGN), in systems known as offset AGN and dual AGN, respectively. She uses research as a tool for education, teaming up with PhD Comics to create a video “Black Holes Explained,” which has received over 50,000 views on YouTube. Additionally, she has been working to improve ...


Recipient Of The 2017 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Vincent Enriquez '99 Mar 2017

Recipient Of The 2017 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Vincent Enriquez '99

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Major Enriquez served as part of Operation Enduring Freedom with deployments in Afghanistan and PACOM Theater. His awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters, Army Achievement Medal, Joint Meritorious Unit Award, Combat Action Badge, Parachutist Badge, Air Assault Badge, Sapper Tab, Ranger Tab, and Special Forces Tab. His foreign awards include the German Armed Forces Proficiency Badge (Gold), and Australian, Korean, and Thai Airborne Wings. Army Ranger and Special Forces “Green Beret” Major Vincent Enriquez graduated from the United States Military Academy with a ...


Recipient Of The 2017 Alumni Trailblazer Award, Claudia Flores '93 Mar 2017

Recipient Of The 2017 Alumni Trailblazer Award, Claudia Flores '93

Alumni Trailblazer Award

Ms. Flores is an Assistant Clinical Professor of Law and Director of the International Human Rights Clinic (IHRC) at The University of Chicago Law School. IHRC works to promote and protect the human rights of individuals and communities globally. Prior to The University of Chicago Law School, Flores was a partner in the civil rights practice of Hughes Socol Piers Resnick & Dym, Ltd. Additionally, she served as constitutional and legal advisor for the United Nations in East Timor and Zimbabwe. She also managed a program of the American Center for International Labor Solidarity to combat human trafficking in Indonesia and ...


Impact Report 2017: Imsa30, The Promise And Power Of Imsa, Illinois Mathematics And Science Academy Mar 2017

Impact Report 2017: Imsa30, The Promise And Power Of Imsa, Illinois Mathematics And Science Academy

Impact Reports

The State of Illinois launched the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy (IMSA), which is recognized as the world's leading teaching and learning lab for imagination and inquiry, in collaboration with business, education, and science leaders. For 30 years, IMSA has pioneered the future of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education through its two legislative charges: 1) to provide a uniquely challenging education for students talented in the areas of mathematics and science and 2) to stimulate further excellence for all Illinois schools in mathematics and science. IMSA champions these goals through:

New STEM teaching models: leading the charge ...


Recipient Of The 2015 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Gabriel Demombynes '89 Dec 2015

Recipient Of The 2015 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Gabriel Demombynes '89

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

As an economist at the World Bank, Dr. Gabriel Demombynes works on issues of poverty and inequality in developing countries. He is best known for his work arguing for the greater use of the scientific method in evaluating international development programs. Together with co-author Michael A. Clemens, he published a groundbreaking critique of the Millennium Villages Project, a high-profile rural development project implemented in several communities in sub-Saharan Africa. Dr. Demombynes holds both a BS in Civil and Environmental Engineering and a BA from the Plan II Liberal Arts Honors Program at the University of Texas at Austin, as well ...


Recipient Of The 2015 Alumni Titan Award, Michael Suh '97 Dec 2015

Recipient Of The 2015 Alumni Titan Award, Michael Suh '97

Alumni Titan Award

Mr. Suh currently serves as the treasurer and chair of the Finance Committee for the IMSA Fund Board of Directors. Mr. Suh has been a loyal and generous donor to the IMSA Fund for 10 years. In 2006 he became an advocate for the IMSA Fund to establish an endowment program. His advocacy for “stability and investment” was a critical factor in influencing IMSA and the IMSA Fund to establish its first endowment. Mr. Suh graduated from the University of Chicago with a BA in Economics, Mathematics and Statistics and an Administration MBA from the University of Chicago in Analytic ...


Recipient Of The 2014 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Steve Crutchfield '93 Dec 2014

Recipient Of The 2014 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Steve Crutchfield '93

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

In August 2012 Steve Crutchfield was appointed the Executive Vice President and Head of U.S. Options at NYSE Euronextin order to create a “more integrated and efficient operation”, and became CEO and a member of the Board of Directors of NYSE Amex Options LLC; all accomplished before he turned 40. He serves as the sole leader of the NYSE Euronext system. Steve manages relationships for all strategic NYSE Euronext clients, leads key business development initiatives, leads all media and industry engagement activities and provides strategic counsel to NYSE global executive management. Steve is a regular speaker at various U ...


Recipient Of The 2014 Alumni Titan Award, Melvin R. Bacani '90 Dec 2014

Recipient Of The 2014 Alumni Titan Award, Melvin R. Bacani '90

Alumni Titan Award

Melvin has been an active and engaged volunteer with IMSA and the IMSA Alumni Association since 2009, when he first joined the IMSA Alumni Association Cabinet and took the lead role in planning his 20-year reunion for his class. His volunteer efforts have increased every year since, and he has had a triple role as an IMSA alumnus, an IMSA parent, and an IMSA employee. Melvin has played a critical role in advancing the work of the IMSA Alumni Association, enhancing the tools and support needed for the Cabinet leaders to truly lead and execute programs.

Melvin has brought his ...


Recipient Of The 2013 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Gretchen E. Green '92 Jul 2013

Recipient Of The 2013 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Gretchen E. Green '92

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Dr. Gretchen E. Green is a physician leader who brings a combined focus on science and society to benefit her patients, fellow physicians, and the US population at large through her role as vice chair of the National Women’s History Museum Board of Directors. Currently an attending radiologist at Greensboro Radiology in North Carolina, Dr. Green has been actively involved in advocacy for women physicians and patients through research since graduating from IMSA. Dr. Green advocates for women undergoing breast imaging and obstetrical ultrasound, using her expertise as a radiologist and her background on the societal impact of imaging ...


Recipient Of The 2013 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Kathleen Plinske '97 Jul 2013

Recipient Of The 2013 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Kathleen Plinske '97

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Dr. Kathleen Plinske is a distinguished educational leader with a passion for providing access to higher education to traditionally disadvantaged students. At a young age of 32, Dr. Plinske serves as President of Valencia College’s Osceola and Lake Nona Campuses in Kissimmee and Orlando, Florida. Dr. Plinske is responsible for all academic, administrative and fiscal leadership of the campuses, and was responsible for overseeing the development of a new $45 million, 150,000 square foot building at the Osceola Campus. Recently named as the top community college in the nation by the Aspen Institute, the Osceola Campus serves 12 ...


Recipient Of The 2013 Alumni Trailblazer Award, B. Scott Gaudi '91 Jul 2013

Recipient Of The 2013 Alumni Trailblazer Award, B. Scott Gaudi '91

Alumni Trailblazer Award

Dr. B. Scott Gaudi is an internationally acclaimed astronomer who has been involved with the discovery of nearly two dozen extrasolar planets. In 2008, Dr. Gaudi received worldwide media attention for leading a team of 69 international astronomers in the discovery of a “scaled-down” Solar System. This discovery, published in the journal Science, implies that Solar Systems similar to ours might be common throughout the Galaxy. Dr. Gaudi is an associate professor in the Department of Astronomy at Ohio State University. He was awarded the Helen B. Warner Prize for “significant contribution to observational or theoretical astronomy” by the American ...


Recipient Of The 2013 Alumni Titan Award, Dwan Lamar Prude '97 Jul 2013

Recipient Of The 2013 Alumni Titan Award, Dwan Lamar Prude '97

Alumni Titan Award

Dwan LaMar Prude has unselfishly, tirelessly and graciously shared his time, talents and Titan spirit with the IMSA community. From his strategic guidance to his mentorship of students, Prude’s dedication and commitment advances IMSA’s mission and work at every level. He has been a servant leader as he promotes IMSA, our PROMISE Programs, and the benefits of attending the Academy with great pride, passion and confidence. In 2012, Prude served as IMSA’s Convocation Speaker, kicking off the school year with a rousing and heartfelt speech that left students inspired for the new school year. That summer, he ...


Recipient Of The 2012 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Alex (Dietrich) Greene ’97 Jul 2012

Recipient Of The 2012 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Alex (Dietrich) Greene ’97

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Alex (Dietrich) Greene has dedicated her life to a career in service. As one of the nation’s first female strike-fighter aviators, Greene is a pioneer and a champion of diversity. She is a founding member of the military’s eMentor program, promoting mentorship and opportunity for future generations of minorities to succeed in untraditional fields. Beginning her career in the U.S. Navy, Greene was rapidly promoted through military ranks for her sophisticated strategic vision and flawless tactical execution. She led the military establishment in policies and programs to not only ensure our national security but also advance the ...


Recipient Of The 2012 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Winjie Tang Miao '94 Jul 2012

Recipient Of The 2012 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Winjie Tang Miao '94

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Before turning 30, Winjie Tang Miao was named a hospital president and in 2011, she was tapped to lead the development of the newest hospital in the Texas Health Resources system. Miao’s rise to the top follows her success in previous health care administration leadership roles. Miao oversaw the development of more than $500 million in construction projects and the growth and development of a nationally-recognized breast health program. She is recognized as a “true visionary” with “a strong ability to grow inpatient and outpatient volumes, expand services in the community and advance quality in many areas of the ...


Recipient Of The 2012 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Sam Yagan '95 Jul 2012

Recipient Of The 2012 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Sam Yagan '95

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Sam Yagan is a leading and widely-recognized serial entrepreneur or “netreprenuer” who has successfully launched, grown and sold companies in the consumer internet sector. In addition to his role as co-founder and CEO of OkCupid, he also enables budding entrepreneurs to get their start through Excelerate Labs, a leading start-up accelerator in Chicago which provides seed money and an abundance of mentoring. Yagan is a champion of disruptive innovation that “changes the game” and works by effectively addressing cost, quality and fun, and is an ardent proponent of technologies that make information free and ‘technologies for good’. Yagan is a ...


Recipient Of The 2012 Alumni Titan Award, Amy (Timm) Kinney '95 Jul 2012

Recipient Of The 2012 Alumni Titan Award, Amy (Timm) Kinney '95

Alumni Titan Award

As a cabinet member of the IMSA Alumni Association (IAA) since 2008, Amy Kinney has dedicated her volunteer efforts to launch and expand the College, Career, and Choices (CCC) Forums, the most prominent program alumni currently provide for students at IMSA. These forums, held multiple times each year, feature alumni panelists who share their collegiate and professional experiences and answer questions from students, providing insight to life beyond IMSA. This program not only establishes a means for alumni to give back directly to the students, it reengages alumni with IMSA and solidifies the IAA’s commitment to IMSA students. Kinney ...


Recipient Of The 2011 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Ronjon Paul '89 Jul 2011

Recipient Of The 2011 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Ronjon Paul '89

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Dr. Ronjon Paul ’89 is a leader in the field of reconstructive cervical and lumbar spinal surgery. As a spinal surgeon and medical director for The Spine Center of DuPage Medical Group, Dr. Paul has treated and taught neurosurgeons and spinal surgeons from around the world. He is an award-winning researcher in genetic tissue engineering for degenerative disc disease and other spinal disorders, and his findings have been published in major medical journals. He has been an invited speaker at many regional, national, and international medical conferences reaching international audiences. Dr. Paul has also been involved in basic science research ...


Recipient Of The 2011 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Frank Wood '92 Jul 2011

Recipient Of The 2011 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Frank Wood '92

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Dr. Frank Wood ’92 is an accomplished entrepreneur, computer scientist, statistician, and educator. Dr. Wood is an assistant professor of statistics at Columbia University and an award-winning researcher in the field of statistical machine learning. He conducts research at the intersection of neuroscience, computer science, statistics, and cognitive psychology; with a current focus on models of natural language and algorithms for lossless compression that shed light on the path towards artificial intelligence. He has founded two companies, Betacular, Ltd., a London-based predictive markets software company and ToFish!, Inc., a Washington, DC-based content-based image retrieval company which was acquired by AOL ...


Recipient Of The 2011 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Matthew Pritchard '93 Jul 2011

Recipient Of The 2011 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Matthew Pritchard '93

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Dr. Matthew Pritchard ‘93 is a geophysicist who measures changes in the shape of the Earth and develops models of the myriad processes that cause these changes including: earthquakes, volcanoes, groundwater, landslides and glaciers. He is an associate professor in Earth and Atmospheric Science at Cornell University and a faculty fellow at the Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future. Through research and teaching, Dr. Pritchard strives to answer some of today`s pressing societal questions about natural hazards and the degree to which humans are influencing glaciers and groundwater resources. His work has been published in many science journals and ...


Recipient Of The 2011 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Clara Shih '00 Jul 2011

Recipient Of The 2011 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Clara Shih '00

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Clara Shih '00 is a trailblazer in many rights, combining her keen knowledge and entrepreneurship savvy to help influence, improve and innovate business technology applications nationwide. Among her many accomplishments since graduating from IMSA in 2000, Shih was named one of the Most Influential Women in Technology 2010 (The Entrepreneurs group) by Fast Company magazine and authored The Facebook Era: Tapping Online Social Networks to Build Better Products, Reach New Audiences, and Sell More Stuff which is now used as a textbook at the Harvard Business School. In addition, Clara just published her second edition of The Facebook Era ...


Recipient Of The 2010 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Dan Frakes '89 Jul 2010

Recipient Of The 2010 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Dan Frakes '89

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Dan Frakes is a respected technology writer and editor, focusing on personal computing and digital media. He has written over 800 articles and has authored or contributed to over 20 books, including one of the early e-books nearly 15 years ago. He is currently a senior editor and columnist at Macworld magazine and Website and an editor for the Take Control series of electronic books, and has previously held positions as the senior reviews editor for Playlist magazine and Website and as editor for MacFixIt.com. In 2006, Frakes was named to the MacTech 25, a publicly chosen list of ...


Recipient Of The 2010 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Lillian S. Kao '89 Jul 2010

Recipient Of The 2010 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Lillian S. Kao '89

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Lillian S. Kao, M.D., M.S., is an associate professor in the Department of Surgery and faculty for the Center for Clinical Research and Evidence-Based Medicine at the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston (UTHSC). She also serves as the Vice-Chief of Surgery at the Lyndon B. Johnson General Hospital in Houston. Dr. Kao’s main research interest is the prevention and treatment of surgical infections. She has several grants for her clinical research, including an NIH career development award. In 2006, Dr. Kao was the recipient of a Robert Wood Johnson Physician Faculty Scholar to study ...


Recipient Of The 2010 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Travis Schedler '98 Jul 2010

Recipient Of The 2010 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Travis Schedler '98

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Travis Schedler is an instructor in mathematics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he holds a five-year fellowship from the American Institute of Mathematics (AIM). Schedler was the sole recipient of the 2008 AIM Fellowship, an award that is “intended for an absolutely first-rate new Ph.D. -- someone with the potential to leave a lasting mark on mathematics.” The fellowship supports one outstanding new Ph.D. pursuing research in an area of pure mathematics, and covers 60 months of full-time research as well as funds for travel and equipment. Schedler has written or co-authored 19 research articles, including one ...


Recipient Of The 2009 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Thandeka K. Chapman '89 Sep 2009

Recipient Of The 2009 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Thandeka K. Chapman '89

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Dr. Thandeka K. Chapman is an Associate Professor of Urban Education in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee. She has conducted research on policy implementation in desegregated schools, urban small school reforms, teaching and learning in racially diverse classrooms, and evaluating Social Justice curricula. Her most recent publications are six edited volumes of the History of Multicultural Education co-edited with Carl A. Grant. She also co-edited a new book, The Practice of Freedom: Social Justice Pedagogy in the United States, to be published in February 2010. Other publications include: “Peddling Backwards: Reflections of Plessy ...


Recipient Of The 2009 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Rebecca Willett '96 Sep 2009

Recipient Of The 2009 Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award, Rebecca Willett '96

Alumni Distinguished Leadership Award

Prof. Rebecca Willett is a prolific contributor to the field of electrical and computer engineering through teaching, cutting-edge research and publishing as an assistant professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Duke University. Her teaching and research interests are focused on signal and image processing techniques and how these can be applied to help advance a variety of other fields, including medical imaging, astronomy, networks, and bioinformatics. As a testimony to the broad implications of her research, Prof. Willett is assisting the Department of Defense through her work on the Computer Science Study Panel, run by the ...


Recipient Of The 2009 Alumni Titan Award, Pooja K. Agarwal '01 Sep 2009

Recipient Of The 2009 Alumni Titan Award, Pooja K. Agarwal '01

Alumni Titan Award

Pooja K. Agarwal has contributed a significant amount of time, talent and treasure to IMSA as an alumna. Following graduation, Agarwal became actively involved in the IMSA Alumni Association and served as an at-large cabinet member for three years. She volunteered as an Intersession facilitator from 2004-2007 and assisted as the alumni liaison in 2006, recruiting alumni and organizing appreciation activities. Agarwal’s efforts helped to build the foundation for alumni volunteerism in Intersession, which reached record-high alumni participation in 2009. Since 2001, she has also been actively involved in the IMSA Kids Institute (KI) program as a teacher and ...


Recipient Of The 2009 Alumni Titan Award, Sendhil Revuluri '90 Sep 2009

Recipient Of The 2009 Alumni Titan Award, Sendhil Revuluri '90

Alumni Titan Award

Sendhil Revuluri was instrumental in laying the foundation for many of IMSA’s current alumni outreach activities. Well-known by alumni, Revuluri was one of a small group who worked diligently to strengthen the alumni network and the IMSA Alumni Association (IAA). As a cabinet member and treasurer of the Alumni Association, Sendhil assisted with early online outreach efforts, reunion planning, and fundraising appeals to alumni. His efforts paved the way for what would be a multi-year campaign to reach the $1 million goal in alumni contributions for the IMSA Fund for Advancement of Education. In addition to his service on ...


Field Of Dreams: Examples Of Imsa Central And Southern Illinois Graduates, Marti Guarin Apr 2002

Field Of Dreams: Examples Of Imsa Central And Southern Illinois Graduates, Marti Guarin

Examples of Student Diversity

The vignettes and short snapshots in this booklet give the reader just a hint of the richness and diversity of experiences of IMSA alumni from Central and Southern Illinois. Space precludes telling so many other stories, of how horizons broadened as students accepted the opportunities at IMSA.

Thank you to Series Editor Cathy Veal, Vice President for Advancement, whose vision brought these booklets to life. lean Bigger of IMSA's Furnas Information Resource Center (IRC) created the title, design concepts, and the montage. She and Angela Richardson of the IRC gave invaluable ongoing counsel. Many thanks also to Jerre Henriksen ...


Reaching For The Stars: Examples Of African American And Latino Imsa Graduates, Marti Guarin Jan 2001

Reaching For The Stars: Examples Of African American And Latino Imsa Graduates, Marti Guarin

Examples of Student Diversity

Searching for the secrets in the heart of the atom, or in the genetic code that makes each of us unique, IMSA's African-American and Hispanic alumni are extending the frontiers of science. They are achieving and contributing in many fields, engineering Illinois products, researching disease, teaching Illinois students, and improving Illinois technology.

The vignettes give an extended look at several alumni, and the snapshots give a glimpse of more. Here our underrepresented alumni tell how IMSA prepared them for academic and personal life, and gave them opportunities to develop tools for success.

Series Editor Cathy Veal, Vice President for ...