Scholarship Impact: Jill Laird

Receiving a scholarship helped Jill Laird make her decision to come to Illinois. She knew after being notified about her scholarship award that Illinois would be able to take care of her and offer her support throughout her academic career. 
She was drawn to the field of engineering while she was in middle school. Math and science were her favorite classes. When it came time to choose a path for her college career, she knew engineering was the best way to apply that love in a way that could benefit the world. Eventually, Jill would like to work with a program that gets more women involved in math and science so that girls can find a place in engineering.
As a freshman in mechanical engineering, she is still working through her general education requirements and has not taken any engineering courses yet. However, she is enjoying Chemistry 102 and Latin 101. Jill is also a proud member of the Marching Illini, where she is a member of the trombone section. When she’s not practicing with the band or studying, she enjoys playing golf and knitting while watching Netflix. 
Jill is very thankful to be a recipient of the 2016-2017 Sundstrand Scholarship in Memory of Donald A. Straznickas. She feels like it is a fantastic honor to be chosen. Her parents had a dream of her and her brother to graduate without student loans, and this scholarship is making this goal much more achievable.
“I am so thankful for the scholarships and everything that they represent. It’s a fantastic honor and I will do my absolute best to live up to it.”
Honors and Awards
  • James Scholar in Mechanical Engineering
  • Sundstrand Scholarship in Memory of Donald A. Straznickas
  • A. Richard Ayers Scholarship for Minorities in Engineering
  • Illinois Engineering Achievement Scholarship
  • Chamberlain Group Corporate Scholarship