Two local high school graduates are leaving Montini Catholic High School with more than their diplomas.
Angela Maduzia of Downers Grove and Erin Slaten of Woodridge also are taking with them bragging rights as two of the newest members of Montini’s Class of 2022 Scholarship Club.
Maduzia was recognized for receiving more than $1 million in college scholarship offers.
Slaten earned more than $750,000.
This fall, Maduzia is headed to Creighton University, where she plans to major in business administration and management.
Her future career goals are to be either a project manager or medical and health services manager.
“My mom is a nurse and my sister is studying to become one,” Maduzia said. “I knew that I didn’t want to be a nurse, but I have always been interested in the medical field and the business side of things.”
Receiving the scholarship money, she said, “is huge.”
“Because that was one main factor in my decision. College is expensive and knowing that I needed to pay for it, I looked at what each school offered me scholarship and grant-wise when I made my final decision,” Maduzia said. “Getting money off my tuition is really big because that means I don’t need to take out as big of a loan when I pay for college.”
She is grateful for her parents, who Maduzia said pushed her to do well academically.
“And it makes me feel proud for getting all my scholarships because that means that my hard work in school has paid off,” she said.
Slaten is headed to the University of Illinois Chicago this fall to study nursing through the university’s Guaranteed Professional Program Admissions. She is excited to turn her longtime dream into a reality.
“I was actually in second grade when I decided I wanted to be a nurse,” Slaten said. “By eighth grade, I knew I wanted to be a neonatal nurse practitioner.”
Her volunteer work at Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital, which she began last year, helped solidify the decision.
“I definitely enjoy caring for people,” Slaten said. “And I’ve always looked up to my cousin who’s a nurse. So that inspired me, too.”
As for the scholarship money, “I am extremely grateful,” she said.
“I view it as an opportunity to accomplish my goal of helping others as a nurse. Scholarship opportunities like this are important for people because it provides an opportunity for them to better themselves through education and ultimately make a better society,” Slaten said. “In many ways, it shows the value of our educational system because all people are deserving of a quality education.”
Montini Catholic seniors from the Class of 2022 accumulated more than $15.6 million in scholarship offers, according to a school news release. Montini seniors have earned more than $89 million in college academic scholarship offers in the past five years.
Both Slaten and Maduzia are grateful for their high school experiences.
“Montini has shaped me to become the student and person I am today,” Maduzia said. “They taught me to always put forth my best work in everything I do. Montini has helped me prepare for college as well as the real world.”
“Montini really allowed me to explore my interests and gave me a good background on my education,” Slaten said. “And I had really good teachers who helped me stay on track and focused throughout high school and encouraged me to keep trying.”