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Scholarships are available every year for both Local 943 members and/or their dependents.  Listed below are links to pages with more information about these scholarships.


AFT Local 943 Scholarship -- Deadline March 21, 2024

Every year the Southwest Suburban Federation of Teachers, AFT Local 943 awards two
scholarships in the amount of two thousand dollars ($2,000.00) each.

IFT Carl J. Megel Scholarship -- Deadline March 1, 2024

In 2024, the IFT will award one $20,000 Megel scholarship ($5,000 each year for four years) to a deserving high school senior who is enrolled in a special education school, class, or program for students with disabilities.

IFT Robert G. Porter Scholarship -- Deadline March 1, 2024

The Illinois Federation of Teachers shall provide annually two $20,000 scholarship awards ($5,000 each year for four years) to current high school seniors with no less than a cumulative "B" grade average.

AFT Robert Porter Scholarship -- Deadline March 31, 2024

The AFT Robert G. Porter Scholars Program offers four 4-year, $8,000 post-secondary scholarships to students who are dependents of AFT members, as well as 10 one-time $1,000 grants to AFT members to assist with their continuing education.

Chicago Federation of Labor William A. Lee Memorial Academic Competition Scholarship

Chicago Federation of Labor William A. Lee Memorial Random Draw Scholarship

Deadline for both February 28, 2024

Each year, the Chicago Federation of Labor awards 10 William A. Lee Memorial Scholarships to high school seniors, five to the winners of the Academic Competition, and five to the winners of the Random Drawing.  Students are not eligible to enter both categories.


Union Plus Scholarship -- Deadline January 31, 2024

Award amounts:  $500 to $4,000.  These one-time cash awards are for study beginning in the Fall of 2024. Students may re-apply each year.


Local 943 wishes both of our amazing winners for 2024 the best of luck and success in their future endeavors.


Kaitlyn Kirk

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My future aspirations align perfectly with ideals of Local 943. Growing up I have always been interested in sign language. I grew up with deaf friends who clearly had a harder time in school than most kids. They were not always able to understand what the teachers were

saying which put them at a disadvantage over their peers. While everyone else could understand all that was said, my friend struggled to understand the lesson. While most kids can hear the lesson without much effort people in the deaf community have to stay focused constantly attempting to read the lips of a teacher that may not always be facing the students. This caused my friend to get behind in school work forcing her to have to work much harder on her own time. Having an interpreter could have helped my friend as well as many others like her to understand the work and stay on track in their classes.They had to work much harder and often needed repeated instructions, giving them the chance to read the teachers lips. My friend should have had an interpreter at the time but did not, which was the point I learned of interpreters and how helpful they could have been to people like my friend. I saw how much she was struggling and wanted to do what I could to help her. I used my school Ipad and researched as best as I could. At this point I was still in elementary school so when researching didn’t get me very far I asked my mom for help. After seeing the struggles the deaf community faces, I decided to further my knowledge of deaf education by going to college to become an interpreter for deaf students.

Just as I would like to become an advocate for the deaf community I appreciate that unions bring workers together to advocate for better working conditions. I like that unions strengthen schools by ensuring teachers are being compensated for their work which helps students to get a quality education. Just as I would like to fight for equal rights I also support unions because they promote job security and stability for working families. I appreciate how unions advocate for fair compensation, benefits, and health


Julia Stalzer

I am consistently hardworking and dedicated to the organizations I am involved in, ready and willing to help with whatever tasks or responsibilities arise. I put my best foot forward in any situation and aim high in all aspects of my life— namely my job, extracurriculars, and

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my education. Over the years I have learned valuable skills in the workplace and my academic environment, such as strong leadership, time management, and self-advocacy, that I apply to my daily life to achieve both my personal goals and the goals of the groups that I participate in.

Not only do I come from a long line of union members, but I am a member of the UFCW Local 881 myself, which makes me a fifth-generation union employee. I have acquired valuable leadership skills, responsibility, and dependability in my time employed at the Jewel Osco in my neighborhood. In addition, frequent interactions with customers and managers in the workplace have shaped me into a more outgoing person, and I can help and get to know community members from all walks of life.

For my college career, I am seeking the diverse urban environment of downtown Chicago at the University of Illinois at Chicago. The city to me is an intersection of art, progressiveness, and opportunity that I have gravitated toward from a very young age. I plan to pursue a career in Design and/or Architecture and apply the expertise that I gain from attending college toward something bigger than myself. I have been dedicated to my own artistic expression for many years. I am a lens-based artist and writer in my free time. The prospect of being able to design buildings and homes for a community fills me with excitement and pride. My goal as a future architect is to employ techniques that create sustainable and environmentally friendly structures for a healthier and more stable environment in the community. It is also important to me to make housing affordable for working people and families, to hopefully expand their economic opportunities as well.

My experience with working in a Union has helped me develop a strict set of standards for a workplace environment and advocate for my rights to healthcare and fair pay. I know now to seek these crucial principles in any future careerscape- ones that embody the values of a strong union, support its workers, and advocate for its employees' well-being and rights.

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