97 High Achievers Choose College of DuPage

Educating the Next Generation of Leaders

College of DuPage continues to attract talented, high-achieving high school seniors. This year’s 97 Presidential Scholars represent a 56 percent increase over the previous year, and in the words of President Dr. Robert L. Breuder, “these numbers are a testament to the higher education treasure that is College of DuPage.”

Earl Dowling, COD’s Vice President of Student Affairs, said, “The high quality of our instruction, small class sizes, innovative programs and state-of-the-art facilities have created an educational environment that appeals to exceptional students. Collectively, everything offered by College of DuPage leads to an agenda for success.”

COD’s Presidential Scholars pool carried an average GPA of 4.027 on a 4.0 scale, and had an average ACT composite score of 28.24. In fact, 32 Presidential Scholars reported ACT scores of 30 or better. All Presidential Scholars are enrolled in the College of DuPage Honors Program and the Phi Theta Kappa Honors Society.

Presidential Scholars must pursue a degree or certificate at College of DuPage and enroll in a minimum of 15 hours per semester, maintain a 3.5 cumulative GPA, and complete a minimum of 15 Honors credit hours, including an Honors seminar and/or Humanities 2210, Leadership Development. Presidential Scholars must also complete a designated Service Learning course or 20 hours of approved volunteer work during their first year at COD.

For more information about the Presidential Scholars award or attending College of DuPage, contact the Admissions and Outreach office at (630) 942-2626 or admissions@cod.edu.

Presidential Scholars find lessons in everyday life

Inspiration for young people begins at home and extends into school, church and other groups, but as COD Presidential Scholars Ilham Hussaini, Colton Eakins and Kimmy Hughes know, life-changing experiences can occur anywhere—on the soccer field, on the bus or even in the Panda Express line at the mall.

“I was standing alone in line when an older couple walked up behind me. I wasn’t in a rush, so I insisted they go ahead,” Kimmy remembers. “As the man’s wife was ordering, he turned to me, told me they had been married for 40 years, and said that he falls in love with her for the first time every morning. I congratulated him, genuinely happy to be reminded how long love can last.”

Kimmy said the man told her a little more about their marriage and how they met, and then thanked her for listening. When she reached the cash register to order, she discovered he had already paid her bill.

“I was dumbfounded,” Kimmy said. “He tipped his hat and walked off with his wife, not realizing how much he had changed my life.”

Colton echoes that sentiment, recalling a day when an elderly man on a bus noticed that Colton was a college student, and began telling him about his own father. 

“He said that even though his father could never afford to send him to college, he loved him and had fond memories of going to baseball games with him.”

Through that chance conversation and others, Colton learned to recognize that “the people I meet allow me to see life in individual ways, and every person I have ever encountered has had an impact on me.”

Ilham learned valuable life skills from a past soccer coach, a Brazilian named Silvio.

“I had reached a low point in my young soccer ‘career,’” she said. “But after a couple training sessions, I saw that he was more than just another coach.”

Ilham recalls that Silvio greeted her with a huge grin, patiently explained the drills, and challenged her to repeat them until she did them successfully. Whenever she became discouraged, he gave her a hug and a pep talk and got her back on track. 

“I realized how reaching out to someone can have a profound effect,” she said, summing up the lessons learned by her fellow Presidential Scholars. “In my life, I will encounter people who will be in need and will not have the courage to reach out. In those situations, having the influence of my experience with Silvio, I will have the courage to reach out to them.”

View Photos of all Presidential Scholars


Contact Information

Direct all comments and questions to the editor at impact@cod.edu.

College of DuPage
425 Fawell Boulevard
Glen Ellyn IL 60137

College of DuPage

425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn IL, 60137

(630) 942-2800 (Main)

(630) 942-3000 (Student Services)

  2017 College of DuPage