Two of the winners in the 2015 Union Plus Scholarship Program represent the IAM. The list includes Nicholas Belsanti, who received a $500 award and Emily Foltz, who received a $2,000 award.
Union Plus recently awarded a total of $150,000 in scholarships to 106 students representing 36 unions.
Nicholas, a 2015 high school graduate and son of Chicago IAM Local 1487 member Anthony Belsanti, plans to pursue a degree in secondary history education. He was a member, and co-captain, of his high school’s speech team and served as the senior class president. Nicholas was named Student Council Sophomore of the Year in 2013 and has been on the honor roll every semester of his high school career. He is active in theater and has achieved recognition as a caddy at a local golf course. Nicholas has performed numerous acts of service as a Boy Scout, including his Eagle Scout project of building a garden for the nursing home where he was a long-time volunteer. He says that coming from an extended family that has worked union jobs for more than a century, unionism is in his blood. Nicholas’ aim is to teach in the Chicago Public School system and become a proud member of the teachers union there.
Emily is the daughter of Stephen Bonifant of Jacksonville, AR Local 463. In 2014 Emily graduated magna cum laude from Duke University with a B.S. in Biology/Pharmacology and earned a Global Health Certificate. She spent the past year as the Mabelle Arole Fellow at the Comprehensive Rural Health Project in Jamkhed, India. This fall, Emily begins pursuit of her medical doctorate at the University of Chicago’s Pritzker School of Medicine. She is a Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society member and a U.S. Presidential Scholar. Emily was a research assistant in the Duke Medicine Department of Surgery and a Best Buddy volunteer for the Duke Hospital Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplant Unit. The oldest of five children, Emily says her father’s union membership made her pursuit of academic success possible.