North Riverside resident Dretha Miller received a $2,000 scholarship award from the Chicago Lighthouse Scholarship Program, because of her academic achievements while dealing with a new diagnosis of eye disease.

While pursuing her undergraduate degree, Miller was diagnosed with advanced glaucoma and feared she wouldn’t be able to finish her degree.

She earned her bachelor’s degree and eventually pursued a master’s degree in criminal social justice at Lewis University.

This year, the Lighthouse awarded 65 scholarships to students from eight states.

Riverside resident Kenzo Emiliano Esquivel, a student at the Illinois Math and Science Academy, this summer attended from a fully funded scholarship exchange program in Cambodia designed to develop leadership skills and inspire action among youths across the U.S.

Esquivel was chosen from more than 160 candidates nationwide to travel to Cambodia via the American Youth Leadership Program, which is funded by the U.S. Department of State.

He and 29 other students from across the U.S. learned about global issues, with an emphasis on environment, climate change, conservation and sustainable development.

From Sept. 17 to 28, the Riverside-Brookfield High School library in conjunction with the School of Environmental Education (SEE Team) hosted a book drive.

Students, staff and community members donated more than 30 boxes and 15 bags of books, which were donated to Open Books, a Chicago nonprofit organization dedicated to literacy awareness.

Sophomore Rena McCullough collected the most books, with 223 items donated.

Lake Forest College welcomed 485 new and transfer students from 35 states and 40 countries this year. Among them was Brookfield resident and Riverside-Brookfield High School graduate Caitlyn Kasper, who was awarded an In-State Scholarship, given to well-qualified high school graduates and the Forest Gates Leadership Scholarship.

Jonathan Ramirez, of Riverside, a junior at Lake Forest College, is studying abroad in Grenada, Spain as part of the college’s Granada Program. He’ll be studying Spanish, taking an elective course, working an internship and living with a Spanish host family. Ramirez attended Fenwick High School in Oak Park.