Back to Latest News



June 20, 2012

Common Roots Initiative (CRI) hosted a scholarship ceremony on June 7, 2012 at Villa Nova Banquets (Villa Park, IL) for its first scholarship recipients -- Glenn Lid, a conceptual, honors, and AP chemistry teacher, and Konstantin Kuksenko, a graduating senior. Both awardees were from Proviso East High School and each received $1,000 in scholarship monies.

Also, Lid surprised Ilya Kuksenko with a George Eastman Young Leaders award from the University of Rochester. He received a custom pen from the college and a certificate from Lid. The award recognized futures leaders who may have a similar impact on the world as George Eastman, the founder of Eastman Kodak Company and who invented roll film. The honor made him eligible to apply for a scholarship to use at the University of Rochester that could provide $7,500 to $20,000 per year.

“You all are like shooting stars,” said Lid while speaking of the Kuksenko brothers. “You just came and brightened up the whole school.”

Many attendees of the ceremony were former students of Glenn Lid’s chemistry classes from almost two decades ago. Lid spoke about how amazed he was that his students would be honoring him with a scholarship in 2012, and that it was used to purchase the latest iPad. Both aspects were unimaginable when he began teaching 33 years ago. He brought “Lid’s Kids” t-shirts to help everyone commemorate the moment.

Common Roots Initiative (CRI) was founded in 2010 through the combined efforts of four alumni from Proviso East High School (PEHS). Its board is primarily comprised of high school friends and family who decided that giving back to their community meant helping to make an impact on both sides of the school desk. In coming years, CRI will expand its financial assistance to other schools in west suburban Chicago.

 Visit our donation page if you would to make a monetary contribution toward our scholarships. If you would like to use an employer-matching program or want volunteer to help CRI, please contact us.