Benedictine Senior Receives Prestigious State Award


A Benedictine student was honored with the Lincoln Laureate Award. (Photo credit:

Dominic Fuclie

News Writer

Maryam Salik, a senior in the college of science, received the Abraham Lincoln Laureate Award in a special ceremony held by the office of Academic Affairs on Friday. The Lincoln Laureate Award, awarded by the Lincoln Academy of Illinois, is presented to a student from each 4-year institution in Illinois.

The award “encourages students to live in the spirit of Abraham Lincoln, providing leadership that inspires and transforms the world to model integrity, courage, honesty, and empathy to others,” said Dr. Ken Newbold, the Provost and Chief Academic Officer for the university who presented the award.

Dr. James Fackenthal, associate professor of biology, spoke highly of Maryams achievements at Benedictine.

“As a Crisis Text line Counselor, she’s there for the desperate. As a Peace Hospice and Palliative Care letter writer, she is there for those needing comfort. As a volunteer at the Oswego Senior Center, she is there for the lonely. As President of Fempower, she led efforts to raise awareness of human trafficking and efforts to support survivors of sexual assault. As an officer with the Fashion Club she played key roles in raising awareness of the responsibility of the fashion industry to comport with environmental sustainability practices,” said Dr. Fackenthal.

“This has been transformative, and it has strengthened my passion for community outreach, preventing gender-based violence, and social equity,” Maryam was quoted in the provost’s speech.

Ordinarily, the award ceremony would be attended by the governor. Due to the pandemic however, the official ceremony, including the governor’s statements, was pre-recorded via zoom, according to a release from the Lincoln Academy.