George Dekan Memorial Scholarship

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George Dekan was a “Renaissance Man” in every sense of the word.  A native of Wheaton, Illinois, and a veteran of World War II, he served the Glenbard Township high schools as both a guidance counselor and teacher of electronics.  A husband, father, coach, businessman, football player, pole vaulter, and musician, Dekan even found time to invent and patent the Athletic Performance Analyzer, a more accurate timing system than even a stopwatch.  He founded Dekan Timing Devices and the Dekan Athletic Equipment Corporation.  He passed away at his home in Fort Myers, Florida, on January 9, 2014, at age 93.

Throughout his 35 years of teaching, coaching, and officiating, Dekan earned many distinct honors.  Although never serving as an Athletic Director, he was thrilled to be one of only three honorees to never hold that position yet still be inducted into the Athletic Director Presidential Hall of Fame in 2000.  Additionally, he was a Hall of Fame member for both the Illinois Track and Cross Country Coaches’ Association and the Illinois Track and Cross Country Officials’ Association.

The Illinois Track and Cross Country Coaches’ Association, as well as family and friends of George Dekan, proudly sponsor the George Dekan Memorial Scholarship to commemorate the life of an amazing individual, and to assist local student-athletes of Cross Country and / or Track and Field with their college expenditures.

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WHO CAN APPLY AND WHAT ARE THE EVALUATION CRITERIA?

Senior athletes who are participating in an Illinois high school Track and Field and / or Cross Country program and who are planning on attending college or a career school are eligible for the non-renewable ITCCCA George Dekan Memorial Scholarship of $2,500. Two scholarships will be awarded based on academic, athletic, and non-athletic achievements, as well as an original essay composed by the applicant. Applicants will additionally need to submit a letter of recommendation and an official high school transcript.

WHOM SHOULD I CONTACT IF I HAVE ADDITIONAL QUESTIONS?

Any and all questions regarding this scholarship should be directed to the George Dekan Memorial Scholarship Director.  James Janota can be reached in the English Department at Neuqua Valley High School at (630) 428-6000, extension 4719, or via email at james_janota@ipsd.org.

WHAT IS THE APPLICATION PROCESS?

  • Step 1:  On a separate sheet of paper and in a typed format, please offer your:
    • Full name (please, no nicknames)
    • Complete home address
    • Home telephone number
    • High school
    • High school’s complete address
    • Cross Country and / or Track and Field coach’s name
    • College(s) of choice
    • Intended major
  • Step 2:  In a detailed fashion, describe your five (5) greatest athletic achievements while participating in high school Cross Country and / or Track and Field.  (20%)
  • Step 3:  In an equally detailed fashion, describe your five (5) greatest non-athletic achievements during your high school tenure.  (15%)
  • Step 4:  Submit a letter of recommendation as provided by your high school Cross Country and / or Track and Field coach in which he / she explains your qualifications as a student-athlete and why you would be a worthy recipient of this scholarship.
  • Step 5:  Submit an official high school transcript as provided by your high school’s registrar or guidance counselor.  (15%)
  • Step 6:  Compose a thoughtful and well-written essay of no more than 500 words in which you consider the following prompt:

    “What has Cross Country and / or Track and Field meant to me?”  (50%)

BY WHEN AND TO WHOM IS THE APPLICATION DUE?

All applications must be received by March 31!  Any application received after the due date, regardless of postmark, will not be considered for the scholarship.  A committee of ITCCCA members will evaluate the applications, and the winner will be contacted by no later than May 15.

All applications should be submitted to the following:

James Janota
George Dekan Memorial Scholarship Director
c/o Neuqua Valley High School
2360 95th Street
Naperville, Illinois 60564-8934

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