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March 11, 2021

This week's Student Spotlight is...

Cara poses in front of a brick wall

Cara Merkle


For many middle schoolers, math and science are tricky, boring, and even loathed classes. But for freshman Cara Merkle, the two subjects are not only understood, but adored! Cara's affinity for math and science is so strong, she's dedicating herself to sharing that love and knowledge as a Middle Grades Math & Science Education major. While only in her freshman year, Cara already has her sights set on how her future classroom will motivate and inspire her students in the face of challenging subjects, "I'd really like to have a classroom that makes lessons more engaging and exciting so students can grow to love the subject!"

This semester we want to celebrate YOU in our Student Spotlight Blog! First-year students and sophomores, juniors, and seniors please complete this quick survey if you've not yet been featured.


Teaching on TikTok


The latest social media trend? Educational TikToks! College of Education alumnae and Champaign Unit 4 Schools middle school teachers Danielle Murchison and Illyanna Lopez are making 7th grade math and COVID safety tips go viral. Watch their feature on WCIA, and check out their TikTok!


Virtual Opportunities


Commencement 2021
Monday May 10-Monday May 17
2021 and 2020 graduates will be invited to participate in the in-person individual, private Stage Crossing experience. This procession will be specific to each graduate. Stage crossings will take place at the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. Each graduate will sign up for a time slot between May 10 and 17, during which the graduate's name will be announced as the cross the stage. Two guests will be allowed to accompany each graduate. All graduates are welcome to participate in the virtual experiences as well. Graduates can expect more details about the virtual and in person events via email and may check the Commencement website for additional information.

D.I.N.E. 2021
Monday, March 22, 6 - 7:30 p.m. CST on Zoom

The Diversity and Inclusion Networking Exchange (D.I.N.E.) 2021 is a great opportunity to practice networking skills, connect with diverse companies, and learn the skills employers value most. Employers from Google, Cargill, City Year, Synchrony Financial and more will be in attendance! Explore the companies in attendance, prepare for the event, and register for the Zoom event here.

UIUC Anyware
For students who are working remotely on campus or elsewhere, UIUC AnyWare provides secure access to many applications on a variety of devices and operating systems. It also offers a virtual desktop environment allowing users to access applications securely, on multiple devices and operating systems including Windows, MacOS, and Linux, iOS, and Android. Learn more and get started today.

16th Annual Goldstick Family Lecture
Thursday April 22, 4 p.m. CST
Join us for the 16th Annual Goldstick Family Lecture in the Study of Communication Disorders, with guest speaker and University of Texas Austin professor in Autism Neurodevelopmental Disabilities Dr. Sandy Magaña! To partake in the virtual event on April 22, please register online by April 12.

Proud to be First Gen
Wednesday March 24, 5 p.m. CST
Are you a First-Generation student? (A first-gen student is someone whose parents did not complete a four-year college degree.) Join us for a campus wide celebration Proud to be First Gen Workshop Series happening this spring semester! Sponsored by the Broadening Inclusion Grant, this three part celebration kicks off on the evening of March 24 with a campus resource fair. Register today!


Scholarships + Awards


Golden Apple Scholars Applications- Less than A Month Left!
Application Deadline: April 1, 2021
This teacher preparation program provides their scholars up to $23,000 in tuition assistance and mentoring that supports the development and success of new, highly-effective teachers for Illinois schools-of-need. Illinois needs passionate resilient young educators like you! High school seniors and first and second-year Illinois college students are eligible to apply.

The Image of Research Competition
Submission Deadline: March 19, 11:59 p.m. CST
This multidisciplinary competition celebrates the diversity and breadth of undergraduate student research at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Students are invited to submit entries consisting of an image and brief text that articulates how the image relates to the research. First prize is $300, and second prize is $200. Learn more and apply on their site.

Research Support Grant
Application Deadline: March 17, 2021
This grant provides students from all disciplines with up to $2,000 to conduct research or creative projects during the academic year both on and off campus (including summer terms). These funds are meant cover research travel costs, living expenses during academic breaks, and materials. Visit their website for eligibility info and the application!

For more information on scholarship opportunities, contact the National and International Scholarships Program at topscholars@illinois.edu or visit their website.


Student Wellness


Art Space: Creative Self-Care
Mondays at 3 p.m. CST
Zoom ID: 828 4384 2873, Password: 266674
Creating art can be a stress release, help calm anxiety, and allow people to process their emotions. On Monday afternoons from 3 to 4 p.m., the Counseling Center offers an Art Space Workshop via Zoom. The workshop is open to all students. It is not counseling and participants will not be asked to share their reflections. 

Cafecito with Counseling Center's Latinx Outreach Team
Tuesdays at 4 p.m. CST
Zoom ID: 831 0750 3371, Password: cafecito
Join the Counseling Center's Latinx Outreach Team every Tuesday at 4 p.m.to discuss communal experiences, mental health, and resources. Drop in whenever you are free. All are welcome!


Career + Professional Development


Summer 2021 Virtual Global Experience
Application Deadline: March 16, 2021
Virtual Global Experiences provide students the opportunity to work remotely with organizations around the world, collaborate on hands-on projects, and conduct research with international faculty and peers. Students will participate in a 1 credit pre-professional course during the term they conduct the virtual project and are encouraged to investigate additional internship or independent study credit options within their departments. 

Illini Career and Internship Fair
April 1 ,10 a.m. - 4 p.m. CST
This fair is open to all majors and hosted in Handshake! On April 1 from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., you will have the opportunity to meet with employers, interact with recruiters through video, audio, or chat, and discover new career opportunities. Pre-schedule 1:1 or group sessions with employers ahead of the fair or on the day-of. Register in advance here!


See you next Thursday for another edition of The Update

Visit our COVID-19 site for the latest info & resources.

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