Illinois College senior named Lincoln Academy laureate

An Illinois College senior has been named one of the top students in the state for 2022.

Emily Bone is among 53 college seniors from across Illinois to be inducted as a student laureate of the Lincoln Academy of Illinois. The academy recognizes seniors from four-year degree-granting state colleges that excel as curricular and extracurricular students, plus one student from Illinois’ community colleges.

Laureates typically are honored with a ceremony in the fall at the Old State Capitol Historical Site in Springfield. Construction at the site this year led the academy to opt for a prerecorded online program.

During the program, Lincoln Academy President and Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker congratulated the students, and academy laureates spoke on the four pillars of Abraham Lincoln’s leadership: integrity, courage, honesty and empathy.

Bone, a Collinsville native, is a biology major with minors in chemistry and music. She said she only found out she was named a student laureate in September, but both she and her family were “proud and excited” about the news.

“I knew that it was an honor that only one student from the school was able to receive,” Bone said, “and I knew that it came with a lot of esteem behind it, as well.”

After graduating from IC in December, Bone plans to attend dental school in fall 2023 and to apply to a program that would allow her to serve as a dentist in the Air Force after finishing dental school.

It is important for those aspiring to become a laureate to give back to the community, Bone said. She is part of IC’s Rotaract chapter and also is a mentor through the school’s residential life program. She said IC had done “an amazing job” in helping her achieve both the laureate honor and her career aspirations.

“I’ve been able to receive internships for my future career in dental,” Bone said, “as well as perform research related to dentistry that I think will take me far and help me develop my passion for my future career.”

Being named a student laureate is useful on a résumé but, more than that, it is meaningful to be a member of such a group, Bone said.

“I think just being a part of that and learning about how Lincoln’s leadership could be used in our own lives is something important,” she said


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