The Illinois Technology Foundation is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the development of the technology talent pipeline in the State of Illinois.

Winners Announced for the 2013 Illinois Technology Foundation Fifty for the Future®

50 College and 10 High School Students from Illinois recognized as technology industry’s best and brightest students


October 18, 2013 | CHICAGO – The Illinois Technology Foundation (ITF), a not-for-profit organization dedicated to fueling the technology workforce in Illinois, announced the top 60 Illinois technology students for 2013.  The program, in its 7th year, recognizes 50 college students and 10 high school students from around the state.


The formal recognition program will be held at the Chicago Cultural Center on November 12, 2013. In addition to the recognition, each student and their nominating faculty receive a $1,000 scholarship to apply to training at Directions Training.


Please join us in congratulating this year’s Awardees.



Safia Abdalla Northside College Prep High School
Zeina Abdul Samad Illinois Institute of Technology
Maxim Agaronov Robert Morris University
Ayesha Ahmed Oakton Community College
Patrick Andrade Northside College Prep
Edgar Barron Benito Juarez Community Academy
Sharaka Berry George Westinghouse College Prep
Ali Bhujwala University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Lawrence Chen Northwestern University
Cary Child Robert Morris University
Tyler Crane Robert Morris University
Recep Dereli Wilbur Wright College
William Diaz DeVry University
Doug DiChiara Robert Morris
Jimmy Dover Jr. George Westinghouse College Prep
Eric Dratnol Augustana College
Jessica Dreher Lewis University
Christopher Durham Illinois State University
Najib El Tecle Northwestern University
Matthew Galloway Notre Dame College Prep
Juanita Garcia Roosevelt University
Steven Geib Northwestern University
Rachel Harsley University of Illinois at Chicago
McClinton Hoover Governors State University
Guadalupe Huerta Lindblom Math and Science Academy
Ryan Jessen Lewis University
Reva Johnson Northwestern University
Soo Kim Northwestern University
Scott Krieder Illinois Institute of Technology
Gonzalo Lema Northeastern University
Marco Maggioni University of Illinois at Chicago
Athena Mascarenhas Loyola University Chicago
Victor Mateevitsi University of Illinois at Chicago
Trushitha Narla Northside College Preparatory High School
Ryan O’Keefe Lewis University
Scott Oliver Northwestern University
Jon Pankhurst Lewis University
Christopher Pelech Lewis University
Joseph Ponton Governors State University
Kimberlt Poole Governors State University
Laureano Raymond Robert Morris University
Gina Richard Governors State University
Daniel Rozemberg DePaul University
Laurence Shaw II ic stars
Tara Smith Barrington High School
Victoria Spencer George Westinghouse College Prep
Nikolina Spirkovska ic stars
Jin Tao Northwestern University
Tom Targosz Moraine Valley Community College
Eric Tendian Illinois Institute of Technology
David Tennant Lewis University
Nisarg Thakkar College of Dupage
Spiro Tromboukis Northwestern University
Mario Vankinscott Morris Graduate School of Management
Juan Vasquez Jr. Lewis University
Abril Vela Northside College Prep
Chen Wang Northwestern University
Jiang Wang Northwestern University
Jung-en Wu Northwestern University
Christian Yenko Northwestern University
Ian Ziarko Lewis University




The annual event, Fifty for the Future®, continues to build awareness of the talent of tomorrow for the Illinois’ technology ecosystem.  ITF is proud to carry on the tradition of highlighting and supporting the future workforce of Illinois.


About the Illinois Technology Foundation


The Illinois Technology Foundation (ITF) is a not-for-profit 501 (c) (3) organization dedicated to the development of the technology pipeline in the State of Illinois.

ITF is a grassroots organization with over 300 passionate volunteers that are focused on developing and retaining the best IT talent and leadership in Illinois by bringing real-world career opportunities to the classroom. In doing this, we enrich the careers of students by helping them find meaningful employment that allows them to pursue their technical aspirations and make valuable contributions to their employers.

ITF focuses on three core areas:

  • Assisting college students in the transition from academia to industry
  • Working with k-12 students, encouraging them to pursue a career in technology
  • Supporting corporations (hiring community) in the continuous development of their technology staff.

Illinois Technology Foundation Partner Sites
Student Tech Club
Center For Innovative Thinking