by Pat Szpekowski, NINA president
We are pleased to announce that Victoria Feng of Buffalo Grove, a recent graduate of Adlai E. Stevenson High School in Vernon Hills, has been awarded this year’s $1,000 NINA John Etheredge High School Scholarship.
The scholarship is now named in honor of former long-time NINA board member John Etheredge, journalist, and editor of the Record Newspapers and KendallCountyNow.com.
Feng’s strong character and passion for journalism has been exhibited throughout her four years at the school. “Ms. Feng demonstrates a genuine interest in and concern for the world she is preparing to enter,” said Dean Bradshaw, English/Journalism teacher at Stevenson High School. “She sees the world through the lens of a polished yet growing journalist.”
When told that she had received the NINA scholarship and the NINA board was very impressed with her submitted body work, Feng was thrilled. “I was so happy to hear the news,” she said.
As a journalist, Feng’s focus has been on social issues and the Asian American Pacific Islander community. According to Feng, her future plans at the University of Chicago include to study either Critical Race and Ethnic Studies or Creative Writing. “I’ll be able to take classes like ‘Writing Lives”’and ‘Writing the Narrative Nonfiction Feature’,” she said. “Outside of class, I’ll continue writing freelance journalism and join an on-campus publication. My ultimate goal is to become a journalist who sheds light on societal inequities that hopefully sparks social change.”
Feng’s experience at Stevenson High will serve her well. She joined the publication production and design class as a freshman and her growth rapidly increased every year. During her sophomore year, the senior editorial staff, the graduating Editor-in-Chief, and Bradshaw were so impressed by Feng’s energy and commitment to excellence that she was named New Editor for her junior year and was named Managing Editor of the school’s must-read website for her senior year.
According to Bradshaw, “All the lessons Victoria learned as a leader during quarantine are clearly evident. It is her mentoring of our young staffers that is more impressive and vital.”
When she’s not writing, Feng’s extracurricular hobby is baking. “It’s a lot of fun,” she said, “and I just like trying new recipes and nothing specific.” She enjoys being with family and friends and listens to indie artists when she has time.
But most of all, Feng is looking forward to her future career. “I have a hunger to tell stories and help the world become a better place,” she said