UI students win prestigious competition

UI students win prestigious competition

A team of University students received $10,000 towards a project that won the Your World, Your Vision competition hosted by Ernst & Young LLP.

The team was one of three winners among 60 colleges and universities.

The program consists of creating a community garden in a low-income neighborhood. Residents would be able to rent plots of land to grow their own food and improve the ecology of the community.

According to a press release, the program has earned the support of the Champaign Park District, Governor Pat Quinn and First Lady Michelle Obama.

The team is composed of Cameron Blaydes, Erin Harper, Steven Heiss, Sibel Leblebici, Victoria Ngo-Lam, Diana Rechenmacher and Jonathan Weisman.

MAP grant applications increase substantially

Eligible applications for Illinois’ Monetary Award Program (MAP) college grants are up 37 percent this year.

“The increased number is basically because there is quite a bit of uncertainty and there are a lot of people who have lost their employment,” said Bob Andersen, senior associate director at the office of Student Financial Aid for the University. “So, in this kind of situation, a lot more people apply,”

Andersen also said the state government, because of this increase in applicants, might suspend applications until sometime in April.

The number of students eligible for the award is 115,758, an increase from the 84,764 last year, according to an Illinois Student Assistant Commission press release issued March 29.

As of early March, more than 168,000 Illinois undergraduate residents have completed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid.

Those who apply can receive up to $10,000 in federal and state grants for college.

“It really does affect a lot of our students,” Andersen said when asked how the applicant increase will affect the University. “In 2008-2009, we had six thousand students eligible for almost $26 million.”

He added that there are more students this year, which adds up to a considerable sum.

Jimmy John’s opens 1000th shop in Oregon

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Jimmy John’s Gourmet Sandwich Shops has opened its 1,000th location as part of a rapid expansion.

The Champaign-based chain says it’s opened almost 200 new locations in the past three years. The newest store is in Beaverton, Ore.

Food-industry research firm Technomic said last week that Jimmy John’s was the fourth-fastest-growing food chain in the country in 2009 with $602 million in sales.

The first Jimmy John’s opened in 1983 in Charleston, about 45 miles south of Champaign.

From Daily Illini and Associated Press reports