12 Coal City High School students were selected as Illinois State Scholars, an academic recognition announced by the Illinois Student Assistance Commission.
The ISAC has recognized high school students for their academic achievement for 65 years. Illinois State Scholars rank in approximately the top 10 percent of high school seniors from 687 schools across the state. Honorees are selected based on a combination of exemplary scores on the SAT or ACT college entrance exam and class rank at the close of six semesters of study.
ISAC is recognizing nearly 16,700 Illinois students for outstanding achievement in the classroom and among the honored students this year are Coalers Dominic Cimino, Jared Counterman, Jim Feeney, Amelia Fritz, Alaina Gill, Ava Houston, Kylie Jackson, Kevin McConnell, Ryland Megyeri, Kylee Scheer, Abby Stiles and Keaton Stroner.
“On behalf of ISAC, congratulations to all our Illinois State Scholars for their extraordinary academic achievements,” said Eric Zarnikow, ISAC executive director. “These high school seniors managed through the personal and learning challenges of the pandemic for several years of high school, and their accomplishments reflect their passion and dedication to academic pursuits. We also want to acknowledge and thank families, counselors, educators, mentors and communities for their encouragement and often invaluable support in helping students along each step of their educational path.”
Each of the Coal City High School students recognized is also active in school programs and have plans to continue their education following graduation in spring 2024.
Cimino, the son of Daniel and Rachael Cimino, participates in speech, science team, math team and scholastic bowl at CCHS. After graduation he plans to continue his studies in the field of software engineering
Counterman, the son of Caleb and Jessica Counterman, has his sights set on becoming a physicist. His plan is to attend the U.S. Air Force Academy and be a part of the Space Force. His high school activities include soccer, track and field, drama club, theater, madrigals, chess club, scholastic bowl and running club.
Feeney, the son of Kevin and Peggy Feeney, is on the Coaler baseball, basketball and football teams and is a member of Coalers with Character and National Honor Society. Following graduation in May, he plans to attend a four year university to study actuarial science.
Fritz, the daughter of Matthew and Traci Fritz, plans to attend a four year university double majoring in dance education and political science. Her high school activities include theater, drama club, madrigals, National Honor Society and GSA.
Gill, the daughter of Amanda and Tony Gill, serves as president of the student council and National Honor Society. She is also a member of Spanish Honor Society and Link Leaders. Her future plans are to attend Joliet Junior College to study nursing.
Houston, the daughter of Tracy and Devon Elliott, plans to major in political science with a minor in psychology as a pre-law route. At CCHS, she is involved in National Honor Society, Spanish Honor Society, Coalers with Character and is a varsity cheerleader.
Jackson, the daughter of Chris and Suzanne Jackson, is a very active high school student participating in tennis, racket club, color guard and winter guard. She is a member of the Spanish Honor Society, National Honor Society, FBLA, SADD, math team and band. Following graduation she plans to attend a four year college or university, her major is currently undecided.
McConnell, the son of Patrick and Kelly McConnell, is a member of the Spanish Honor Society, art club, speech and participates in trapshooting. His future plans are to pursue a degree in computer science and continue trapshooting in college.
Megyeri, the son of Shanna Arnold and Chris Megyeri, was on the Coaler golf team and is a member of the Spanish Honor Society. Although he is undecided on a field of study he plans to continue his education after high school with his sights set on earning a bachelors and masters degree.
Scheer, the daughter of Joseph and Brandy Scheer, has maintained a busy schedule during high school participating in marching, symphonic, pep and musical pit band, and being a member of art club, scholastic bowl and Music Honor Society. Her future plans are to attend Illinois State University to major in actuarial science.
Stiles, the daughter of Katie Leasure, plans to continue her education at a four year university to study finance. During high school she has participated in tennis, basketball, racket club, math team, Coalers with Character, FBLA, National Honor Society and Spanish Honor Society.
Stroner, the son of Jennifer Stroner-Rolley and Dennis Rolle, has participated in soccer, track and field, running club, chess club, ping pong club, scholastic bowl and student council during his time as a Coaler. His future plan is to attend the University of Kentucky with a goal of becoming a doctor.
The Illinois State Scholar designation is a non-monetary award. Each of the honored students receive a congratulatory letter and certificate of achievement from ISAC. Additionally, the school recognizes the honored student by displaying their photo in the administration hallway.