Ndeye Tall ‘22, a history major/education minor from the Bronx, is the annual recipient of the Lonnstrom Higher Education Opportunity Program Excellence Award.
The honor was established by Douglas Lonnstrom ’66, Ph.D., a Siena professor of quantitative business analysis, and his wife, Cris, to support HEOP students in pursuing their careers and goals after graduation. The $5,000 award may be put toward transportation, moving, living expenses, tuition and book costs.
Tall has been accepted into the rigorous Teach for America program, and will head to Washington, D.C. this June to work as a special education teacher at the high school level.
During her time at Siena, Tall served as an HEOP peer mentor, a pre-first year summer program counselor, and an HEOP advisory board member. She said teaching in underserved communities is very important to her, because she feels she did not connect with her middle and high school teachers.
“I was saddened by the fact that none of my teachers looked like me. In a sea full of black and brown students there was not a single black or brown educator. I found this upsetting, so I decided to become a teacher. I want students to see me and know that coming from an underserved community does not define your future.”
Tall plans to use her funds to set up her new living arrangements in Washington.
“We are so incredibly proud of Ndeye and all she has accomplished these past four years. She has been an amazing student leader and we look forward to seeing her accomplish her goals after graduation. We are so grateful for Doug and Cris Lonnstrom for their continued support of our HEOP students. This award will help Ndeye tremendously as she kickstarts her journey after Siena.”
Yasmin Fisher ’10, HEOP director