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Freshman honored for academic achievement, community involvement

Kesha Green, News Bureau
(217) 333-1085;


CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — A University of Illinois student has received a scholarship from Lifetouch Inc., a photography company, for her academic achievement and community involvement.

Jennifer Perko, a freshman in international studies, was awarded the 2001-2002 Richard P. Erickson scholarship. The $2,000 award is given annually to 15 college students who are children or grandchildren of Lifetouch employees. Her mother, Sharon, is a six-year Lifetouch employee.

Perko of Springfield, Ill., volunteered each week as a Big Brother – Big Sister mentor during her junior and senior years of high school. She also was a member of the French Honor Society and president of her high school French club. Perko plans to study abroad for least one semester. Her career goals include traveling and gaining opportunities to use her language skills, such as in international business or law.

Lifetouch Inc., based in Minneapolis, operates school, retail, event and church photography businesses throughout North America. Founded in 1936 under the name "National School Studios," the company now has operations in all states, Canada and Mexico. In 1984, the company was renamed Lifetouch.

In 1998, the company created the Richard P. Erickson Scholarship Program in honor of the company’s former chairman of the board, who also served as president and chief executive officer.