A Sauk Valley Community College graduate who returned to earn another degree at Sauk was recently honored as a 2009 Coca-Cola National Finalist as part of the All-USA Academic Team competition.
Joanie Padilla of Rock Falls was awarded a check for $1,000 through the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation. Her selection as a Coca-Cola Finalist was based on scores earned in the All-USA Academic Team competition. This program, sponsored by the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation, is administered by Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society (PTK), the national honor society for two-year colleges.
“Education is a life-long endeavor and Joanie has demonstrated that beautifully through her achievement as a Coca-Cola national finalist,” said SVCC President Dr. George Mihel. “She is a sparkling example of an adult that has taken advantage of Sauk’s resources not once, but twice to prepare for a career.”
Padilla graduated May 15th with an Associate in Science. She plans to transfer to Northern Illinois University to major in public health with an emphasis in health promotion. Padilla says she is interested in combating obesity, diabetes and its competitions, and researching bioterrorism. Padilla, who retired after 20 years as a radiologic technologist, graduated with an Associate in Applied Science in Radiologic Technology from Sauk in 1985.
A member of Sauk’s chapter of PTK, Padilla carries a 3.57 GPA and was also active in Sauk’s AmeriCorps program. She is a disaster volunteer with the Whiteside County Health Department, is past president of District 16 of the Illinois State Society of Radiologic Technologists, and is a recipient of NIU’s Centennial Scholarship.
Padilla says both of her experiences at Sauk were good, and, because Sauk is so cost-efficient, it will help her to defer more costs for her future endeavors at NIU. Padilla and her husband Javier have seven children and four grandchildren.