Illinois State University’s Kathryn (Katie) Bruce has been named one of this year’s outstanding college students by the Lincoln Academy of Illinois. She was selected to receive the Illinois State University Student Laureate Award due to her overall success as an engaged student, social justice advocate, and scholar.
The Lincoln Academy’s Abraham Lincoln Civic Engagement Awards are presented for excellence in curricular and co-curricular activities to seniors from each of the state’s four-year, degree-granting colleges and universities, and one student from the community colleges in Illinois.
A senior at Illinois State majoring in history and anthropology with a minor in Native American studies, Bruce is a member of several honor societies and is a Presidential Scholar. She also served as a research assistant at Illinois State’s Dr. JoAnn Rayfield Archives, a highly sought-after research position on campus. Earlier this year, Bruce received the Robert G. Bone Scholarship, the most prestigious university-wide honor for an undergraduate student.
During her time at Illinois State, Bruce has been heavily involved both on and off campus as an active citizen. She is a member of the University and pep bands, an officer for FLAME (Feminist Led Activist Movement to Empower), participated in the Leaders of Social Change trip, and has worked across campus to create a safe space for Native American students. Her most recent contribution to campus has been to re-conceptualize and lead the production of The Monologues, in an effort to highlight even more student voices.
Outside of campus, Bruce participates in the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa in North Dakota and researches and writes on the topic of Native American boarding schools.
Bruce has been praised for her commitment, writing, hard work, inclusivity, and perseverance. She will graduate with honors from Illinois State University in May of 2021. Following graduation, Bruce plans to pursue a master’s degree in museum studies and is currently exploring universities.
For additional information on the Lincoln Laureate program, contact Erin Thomas, director of advancement and assessment in the Division of Student Affairs at (309) 438-1748.