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2021 Winners

Congratulations to the Lakeside Bank 4th Annual "Write On!" Creative Writing Scholarship Winners!

Following a city-wide contest, two Chicago Public High School seniors were selected as the 2021 Lakeside Bank "Write On!" Creative Writing Challenge Scholarship Winners!

Each receives a $2,500 award. Winners were surprised at their homes and presented with giant checks and helium balloons, “Publisher Clearing House” style! Tears and cheers (and hugs! We can hug again!) were exchanged between winners and their families as they celebrated. Congrats, Jordan & Rosabella! We’ve provided a summary of their stories below. And a brief video of each presentation.

The Lakeside Bank 2021 Scholarship Winners are:

Jordan Allen - Kenwood High School

Rosabella Hernandez – Brooks High School

 

 

Jordan Allen – Kenwood High School

Congratulations to Jordan Allen!

Fantastic work, Jordan! She’s a Winner of this year’s Lakeside Bank "Write On!" Creative Writing Challenge. Jordan was awarded a $2,500 Lakeside Scholarship toward her first year at either Columbia College or Northern Illinois, where she plans to study animation, illustration, and writing. Jordan, a recent graduate of Kenwood High School, wrote a very inspiring and charismatic story that moved us all.

Her story outlines the difficult life of a young, dark-skinned, African American girl who struggled to fit in and feel accepted. On top of dealing with her sloppy, alcoholic father at home, she is forced to hear unwanted comments about her color from all her lighter-skinned classmates at school. After sitting next to an elderly woman on the bus who was completely mesmerized by the beauty of a stray black cat, the young girl was inspired to realize her dark skin was beautiful and to take no more from her classmates. The black cat’s symbolism uncovered by the older woman, motivated the young girl to gain confidence and find happiness within herself. Jordan has demonstrated her talent to write, and we look forward to seeing her succeed in the future!

Pictured: Jordan Allen and her mother

Rosabella Hernandez – Brooks High School

Congratulations to Rosabella Hernandez!

Well done, Rosabella! She’s a Winner of this year’s Lakeside Bank "Write On!" Creative Writing Challenge. Rosabella was awarded a $2,500 Lakeside Scholarship toward her first year at Antioch College in Ohio, where she plans to study art history. Rosabella, a recent graduate of Brooks High School, wrote an imaginative and engaging story that kept us all on our toes!

Her story was about a fictional family mystery: The disappearance of the writer’s great-grandfather. The writer’s grandmother refused to talk about her father, yet she kept a framed picture of him in a red flannel shirt. The grandmother would stare for hours at a tree outside the family home, telling the writer how the many dark knots on the tree symbolized a tortured soul captured within. Years later, when the grandmother passed away, the writer moved into the family home and had the old tree torn down. Only to find pieces of red flannel… Rosabella has proven her great writing skills and we look forward to seeing her thrive in the future!

Pictured: Rosabella Hernandez

Pictured: Erica Chianelli and Alan Rose

Lakeside’s annual "Write On!" Creative Writing Challenge is open to:

  • Current CPS High School Seniors, graduating this June in good standing.
  • Students accepted to an accredited two-or-four-year college or university.
  • Those with financial need as demonstrated by the FAFSA Expected Family Contribution.

Lakeside Bank believes in the power of education. “It is the single most important tool we have to effect meaningful social change” says Alan Rose, Lakeside’s Sr. VP, Chief Marketing Officer. "Write On!" is one of Lakeside Bank’s multiple education programs.

Lakeside Bank is a privately owned, 55-year-old Chicago area bank with $2.4 billion dollars in assets.

About Write On

Lakeside Bank believes in the power of education. In 2018 we established the “Write On!” Creative Writing Challenge for Chicago Public High School Seniors the opportunity to win $2,500 College Scholarships.

Applicants must be a current CPS High School Senior, graduating in June in good standing, accepted to a two or four year accredited college or university, and have demonstrated financial need.

Essay topics can be about anything! Science fiction.  Social issues.  The future. The only requirement: weave Lakeside Bank’s tagline, “It’s about time,” into the story, and be between 750-1000 words.

Applications are usually available in January via the CPS scholarship system, Academic Works, and are due in early May.

A committee from Lakeside Bank reads and assesses all entries to select winners.

“Some (essays) are fictional, some are entertaining and some come right from the student’s heart and reflect their life experiences. The stories are moving and provide insight on the many challenges facing this generation. I’m very happy to participate in the scholarship process and so proud Lakeside Bank provides this opportunity. These students are incredibly deserving and in need of the financial assistance.”

Pat McNulty, Vice President, Human Resources, and member of the Lakeside scholarship review committee.

2020 Winners

Now in its third year, the Write On! Lakeside Creative Writing Challenge is open to graduating Chicago Public High School seniors with financial need. Despite the unprecedented times due to COVID-19 and the uncertainty for college in the Fall, we received submissions from all over the City.

Winner Diana Salinas from Senn High School will attend Wellesley College in Massachusetts this fall.

Winner Lori Watson, a Lindbloom High School grad, heads to Dominican University in California.

Because school buildings were closed, we worked with school administrators and parents to surprise the winners at their homes with giant checks and helium balloons, “Publisher Clearing House” style! Congrats, Diana & Lori!

2019 Winners - 2nd Annual

Congratulations to the Lakeside Bank 2nd Annual “Write On!” Creative Writing Scholarship Winners!

Following a city-wide contest with more than FOUR TIMES the number of entries as last year, three Chicago Public High School seniors were selected as 2019 Lakeside Bank Creative Writing Challenge Scholarship Winners! Each winner receives a $2,500 Lakeside College Scholarship Award.

The Lakeside Bank 2019 Scholarship Winners are:

Mateo Bajana – Whitney Young High School

Daron James – Charles Schurz High School

Jasmine Martin – Whitney Young High School

 

2018 Winners - Inaugural

Lakeside sponsored its first Creative Writing Contest to award CPS High School students $2,500 scholarships for college.  Applicants had to submit an original essay, 750-1000 words, incorporating Lakeside’s tagline “It’s About Time.”  We were THRILLED to receive 41 applications, and awarded three deserving students $2,500 scholarships for tuition for college this Fall.    Alan Rose, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, and Erica Chianelli, Marketing & Special Events Consultant, were able to surprise each of the winners at school in a special check presentation.  Congratulations to our winners (Left to Right below):  Dinaluz Torres, Lane Tech High School, Nia Mitchell, Kenwood High School, and Olyvea Momah, Senn High School.