Announcing the CFNIL Scholarship Class of 2020

Announcing the CFNIL Scholarship Class of 2020: 144 local students receiving over $300,000 in awards

The Community Foundation of Northern Illinois (CFNIL) is pleased to announce its 2020 scholarship recipients: 176 scholarships worth up to $305,046 to local students. The scholarships will support the post-secondary educational aspirations of 144 students from 27 local high schools.

CFNIL administers over 90 scholarship endowments.
 The endowments were created by individuals and organizations that recognize the importance of education. Donors establish the criteria for each scholarship, based on their interests and the community’s need. Many of CFNIL’s scholarships are memorials, which celebrate the life and passions of individuals. Thanks to the generosity of scholarship fund creators, since 2000 CFNIL has awarded over $3,300,000 to local students.

Most of the recipients are graduating high school seniors in Boone, Ogle, Stephenson, and Winnebago Counties. Scholarships are awarded to many kinds of students: academic achievers; non-traditional; those with financial need; athletes; all races and ethnicities; pursuing careers in education, STEM, business, fire science, and healthcare; and many more. Some of the scholarships are renewable for up to four years. The diversity of the recipients reflects the diversity of CFNIL’s donors and the communities it serves. Learn more about the CFNIL scholarship class of 2020 at

Scholarship applications are reviewed and scored by community volunteers. A “blind” review process assures that scholarships are awarded objectively to students who best fit the scholarship criteria. This year over 100 volunteers read and scored more than 1,300 scholarship applications.

“We are honored to serve as the steward of scholarship endowments that fulfill the charitable intent of our donors and create a permanent reservoir of opportunity for our students,” said CFNIL President Jon Bates.

Typically, CFNIL hosts a Scholarship Award Night event to honor all the recipients and celebrate with families, donors, and community members. This year, Scholarship Award Night is going virtual and will be broadcast on
CFNIL’s Facebook page at 7 p.m. on Thursday, June 11th. Watch for more details on this event to come!

View a full list of this year’s recipients at