IC Catholic Prep Announces Illinois State Scholars

Illinois Student Assistance Commission congratulates 11 IC Catholic Prep students for their exceptional academic achievement

Elmhurst, Ill. – December 5, 2019 – IC Catholic Prep (ICCP) is pleased to announce that 11 students from the graduating class of 2020 have been recognized as Illinois State Scholars.

The Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC), the state agency committed to helping make college accessible and affordable for Illinois families, confers this prestigious recognition to top Illinois high school students annually. This year, more than 17,500 honorees join the other top students who have been honored for their academic achievements since the designation was first introduced in 1958.

IC Catholic Prep Illinois State Scholars
Back Row (L-R): Ryan Wojtalewicz, Matthew Cira, Thomas Sloan, Kevin Cooke, Maximilian Cook, and Jack Ryan
Front Row (L-R): Katarina Vorne, Ann Guinan, Mason Cairns, Francesca Capannari, and Rachel Simonides

“We are proud of this group of young men and women from IC Catholic Prep for achieving Illinois State Scholar status,” said Thomas Schergen, principal. “They work hard every day and are dedicated to achieving excellence in their academic, extracurricular, and spiritual lives. Each one is a modern day example of our school’s vision to prepare young people who are capable of learning, leading, and serving in today’s world.”

Illinois State Scholars represent approximately the top ten percent of high school seniors from 757 high schools across the state. Illinois State Scholars are chosen based on a combination of exemplary ACT or SAT test scores and sixth semester class rank.

The following IC Catholic Prep students were named 2020-21 Illinois State Scholars:

  • Mason Cairns, Hillside
  • Francesca Capannari, Elmhurst
  • Matthew Cira, Elmhurst
  • Maximilian Cook, Elmhurst
  • Kevin Cooke, Glen Ellyn
  • Ann Guinan, Elmhurst
  • Jack Ryan, Elmhurst
  • Rachel Simonides, Addison
  • Thomas Sloan, Elmhurst
  • Katarina Vorne, Elmhurst
  • Ryan Wojtalewicz, Addison

“On behalf of ISAC, we congratulate the 2020-21 Illinois States Scholars,” said Eric Zarnikow, executive director of ISAC. “I’m consistently impressed with the passion, focus, organization, and dedication of our State Scholars. It is a credit to these students–as well as to their support systems and to our schools–that so many of them are not only driven to achieve but also reflect a true love of learning and a desire to use their education to make the world a better place.”  

While the State Scholar recognition does not include a monetary prize, honorees will receive a congratulatory letter from ISAC and a personalized Certificate of Achievement. Honorees can also download a digital Illinois State Scholar badge that can be displayed on their online profiles and social media platforms, and shared with high school counselors, prospective colleges, employers, family members, and others. A complete list of the 2020-21 Illinois State Scholars ( can be found on ISAC’s website. Note that the Program announces honorees based on the year they would begin any postsecondary education, not based on the year they graduate from high school.

All students, including State Scholars, are encouraged to complete their 2020-21 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) as soon as possible.  The FAFSA is used to determine a student’s eligibility for federal and most state and institutional financial aid available for postsecondary education, including two- or four-year degree programs, certificates, and vocational education.

IC Catholic Prep is the oldest Catholic, co-educational college prep high school in DuPage County. Located in Elmhurst, ICCP is a regional high school that serves students from over thirty-eight communities.

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Media Contact: David Terry, 630-530-3494