Earlier this month, administrators from School Districts 65 and 202 joined the Northwestern Center for Talent Development (CTD)associate director, the Evanston Township High School AVID Coordinator, and EXCITE alum Alanna Williams to recognize and celebrate this year’s eighth-grade class of EXCITE students.

Rising freshmen Paris Bowers, Crystal Boyd, Alainnah Brown, Malachi Clark, Marc Dahlman, Brian Daniels, Jalea Davis, Benjament Easington, Krystal Forrester, Jessica French, Leon Godfrey, Alfredo Gomez, Gabrielle Gordon, Christian and Christina Hamil, KyRen Hunter, Kayla Jackson, Jaylyn Jimenez, Anthony Okacha, Kanijah Pryor, Christophe Smith, Kaitlyn Thomas, Ashley White, and Montay Williams, each completed more than 400 hours of gifted programming in Project EXCITE, most of them since third grade.

Suzanne Farrand, District 65 mathematics curriculum coordinator, said, “This is a milestone for these youngsters who will now enter high school. “

Project EXCITE, a partnership between Northwestern University and School Districts 65 and 202, was designed to help address the achievement gap between minority and non-minority students by providing supplemental educational opportunities for students who are underrepresented in the advanced mathematics and science courses at ETHS. By the end of grade eight, EXCITE students are expected to have completed Algebra I and be prepared for honors-level high school courses in science and mathematics.