About the Collaborative on Early Adolescence (CEA)

NIU Programs and Grants Related to Adolescence

Center for P-20 Engagement

307 Lowden Hall
DeKalb, IL 60115

Lemuel Watson, Executive Director (watson@niu.edu or 815-753-9055)
Marilyn Bellert, Associate Director (mbellert@niu.edu or 815-753-8051)
Paulette Bowman, Administrative Assistant (pbowman@niu.edu or 815-753-1403)

Description: The Center for P-20 Engagement is a portal to NIU's P-20 knowledge, expertise, and resources for educational organizations, business and industry, and community agencies. “P-20” refers to the entire continuum of education and training from pre-school through the graduate school level; that is, wherever and whenever learning is needed to build a better future.

The Center will carry out the following functions in relationships designed for mutual benefit and reciprocity among all partners:

  • Facilitate a P-20 Network of NIU centers, offices, projects, and individuals that deliver programs and services in community settings; the Center's robust database will assist NIU faculty and staff to connect with each other an dwith external partners
  • Strengthen NIU's regional, national, and international presence and impact as a leader in P-20 engagement
  • Manage a portfolio of P-20 engagement activities (projects, conferences, workshops, etc.) and support work of P-20 Network members

Genocide and Human Rights Institute Professional Development and Outreach

Department of History
Genocide and Human Rights Institute
Zuluaf Hall 701
DeKalb, IL 60115

J.D. Bowers, Ph.D.

Description: Genocide and Human Rights Institute Washington, D.C. program; NIU STAND, a student-led anti-genocide coalition that reaches out to NIU and surrounding school district students through programs, benefits, and outreach; Professional development programs for teachers and administrators.

Summer program for teachers is at: http://www.niu.edu/clasep/conferences/institutes/genocide2/index.shtml

Interactive Illinois Report Card

William Monat Building
148 N. Third St.
DeKalb, IL 60115

Harvey Smith, Ph.D.
Director, Interactive Illinois Report Card
ph. 815-753-9680
fax 815-753-2305

Description: The Interactive Illinois Report Card is the statewide website reporting school performance and student assessment performance for all Illinois public schools. Since its initial launch in 2003 the site has expanded to include School Report Card results, school and district improvement planning, and individual-level student test reports, along with curricular and class-room resources and professional development features. The site gives particular emphasis to learning standards and resources to inform instruction. IIRC is a partnership between the Illinois State Board of Education and Northern Illinois University. 

National English Honor Society for High Schools

Department of English
DeKalb, IL 60115
(815) 752-NEHS (6347)

William C. Johnson, Ph. D.,Executive Director
Sigma Tau Delta, Int'l English Honor Society

Description: The National English Honor Society (NEHS), founded and sponsored by Sigma Tau Delta, is the only national organization exclusively for high school students and faculty who, in the field of English, merit special note for past and current accomplishments. Individual high schools are invited to petition for a local chapter, through which individuals may be inducted into Society membership. Immediate benefits of affiliation will be national recognition, scholarship eligibility, and opportunities for national networking with others who share enthusiasm for, and accomplishment in, the language arts. Eventually NEHS will hold conferences and provide ways to link NEHS with other honor societies and with organizations related to the field of English.

Project Educare

Department of Counseling
Graham Hall 416 E
DeKalb, IL 60115

Debra A. Pender, Ph.D., LCPC, NCC, ACS
Assistant Professor

Description: Grant funding from the IL division of Mental Health, Child and Adolescent Unit to develop curriculum in evidence informed practices for the treatment of children and adolescents in the care of grant funded agencies in IL. We also are in the process of developing an eLearning system for clinicians working in these agencies.

Programs for Adolescents

100 Males Preparing for a College Education

Grant North Tower D
(815) 753-1867

Felicia Bohanon
(815) 753-1868

Description: 100 Males Preparing for a College Education supports African American and Latino males as they prepare for college. The program begins with students in middle school and works with them until they graduate from high school. The program is offered in Aurora and Rockford. The program offers after school tutoring, college readiness workshops for participants and parents, mentoring, college visits and cultural enrichment activities. The four week summer program includes academic classes in mathematics, science, writing and literature, as well as sports, and recreational activities.

The College Bridge Program

Grant North Tower D
(815) 753-1867

Felicia Bohanon
(815) 753-1868

Description: The College Bridge Program is designed to support underrepresented minority and economically disadvantaged students as they make the transition from high school to Northern Illinois University and provide information to middle school students and their parents about preparation for college early regardless of the institution they will attend.

The first goal of the program is to increase the retention and graduation rates of traditionally admitted students. Program participants attend a four week summer program between their junior and senior year of high school and an eight week summer program between their senior year and matriculation to Northern Illinois University. The program provides mentoring, college readiness workshops, campus visits, and assists students in developing a network of support that will connect students to the university community throughout the academic year.

The second goal of the College Bridge Program is to increase awareness of college options and to provide information concerning the achievability of attending college. The program conducts workshops for students and their families concerning financial aid options, required academic course work to attend college and the benefits of attending college. 

College of Liberal Arts & Sciences External Programming (CLASEP) Summer Camps

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
148 N. Third
DeKalb, IL 60115

Mark Pietrowski, MA Coordinator
(815) 753-1456

Description: Academic Summer Camps and hosts Regional History and Science Fairs at NIU are offered, along with workshops and mini day camp/academic programming.


College of Engineering and Engineering Technology
590 Garden Road
DeKalb, IL 60115

Suma Rajashankar, Program Coordinator
(815) 753-1442

Description: Get WISE (Women In Step with Engineering), sponsored by Northern Illinois University’s College of Engineering and Engineering Technology, is a new program dedicated to helping young women in middle school and high school explore the exciting and rewarding field of engineering. Through partnerships with local businesses, in-school and on-campus group activities, and one-on-one mentoring opportunities, Get WISE will provide students with valuable hands-on experiences and a support system that includes current NIU engineering students and faculty.

Literacy Clinic

3100 Sycamore Road, Suite 2003
DeKalb, IL 60115
(815) 753-1416

Diagnostic Assessment & Tutoring
815- 753-8450
RITS Program

Description: Our Literacy Clinic Services are offered to students in grades K-12. The Literacy Clinic provides two primary services: diagnostic assessment and tutoring which are provided by advanced graduate students who are seeking reading specialist certification. These services are offered on a rotating basis in DeKalb and at the NIU education centers in Hoffman Estates, Naperville, and Rockford.

Diagnostic Assessment

Our thorough diagnostic evaluation of a student's reading ability determines reading potential and present reading achievement. The report includes the names of the assessment instruments, results of the student's performance on these assessment instruments, an analysis of the student's reading, and recommendations for improving reading.


Tutoring provides individual or small group instruction designed to meet the needs of the learners. Sessions are scheduled on a semester basis. During spring and fall, tutoring sessions typically meet 1-2 times per week. Summer tutoring is a six-week program that meets typically four days per week.

Reading Individualized Tutoring Services (RITS)

This program offers students in grades 1 - 12 an individualized tutoring program to strengthen each child’s reading at the NIU Literacy Clinic in DeKalb.  Tutoring is provided by experienced, certified reading specialists in the areas of phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, comprehension, and study strategies and customized to each individual child.  The emphasis of all tutoring is on helping the student learn useful reading strategies and apply them to real-life reading tasks and materials. 

Northern Illinois University – Enhancing Engineering Pathways (NIU-EEP)

1120 E. Diehl Rd.
Naperville, IL 60563

Registration Questions
Girl Scouts of Northern Illinois
Pam Schnecke
815-741-5521 ,Ext. 7140

Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana
Ashley Smith

Program Questions
Dr. Suma Rajshankar
Email: sumedhras@gmail.com

Description: Northern Illinois University -Enhancing Engineering Pathways (NIU-EEP) is a program funded by the Motorola Foundation to establish a sustainable pathway for Girl Scout Cadettes, Seniors and Ambassadors, girls in grades 6-12, to the Field of Engineering. Middle school is the critical period in girls' lives as they start to dream big about their future, and start analyzing their opportunities. One of the major benefits of this program is that it introduces young women to science and engineering as potential fields of study. This program also provides Girl Scouts with an opportunity to interact with the female engineering students, who give them a different perspective. This project is an alliance between the College of Engineering and Engineering Technology (CEET) at Northern Illinois University (NIU), the Collegiate section of the Society of Women Engineers(SWE), Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana and Girl Scouts of Northern Illinois to develop a program to introduce engineering to Girl Scout Cadettes, Seniors and Ambassadors.

Saturday Workshops and Summer Camps:

The Saturday Engineering Workshops and the summer camps have been designed for Girl Scout Cadettes, Seniors and Ambassadors, to increase the awareness, enthusiasm and excitement amongst the school age girls to explore and enjoy the field of engineering through hands-on activities, discussion forums and field trips rather than watching and listening.

The Science Technology Engineering Middle School Summer Camp

College of Engineering & Engineering Technology
590 Garden Road
DeKalb, IL 60115

Bob Wilkerson

Description: The ExxonMobil Bernard Harris Summer Science Camp (BHSSC) is a free, academic program of The Harris Foundation, which takes an active role in shaping education in students entering grade 6,7, or 8. Science, technology, engineering and mathematics are critical to society’s infrastructure for the 21st century and preserving that future requires an investment, such as the BHSSC, in our youth today.

ExxonMobil Bernard Harris Summer Science

CampThe ExxonMobil Bernard Harris Engineering Summer Camp provides students in sixth, seventh and eighth grade with projects and experiments to foster math, science, engineering and technology skills.The two-week, residential camp offers daily classes intended to strengthen campers' math and science skills and stimulate interest in a careers in science and engineering. University faculty and certified classroom teachers will provide instruction. The Science Technology Engineering Middle School Summer Camp is a program approved and funded by the ExxonMobil Bernard Harris Foundation. The program seeks to increase underrepresented students' interest in future math and science careers.

Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic

School of Allied Health and Communicative Disorders
3100 Sycamore Road
DeKalb, Illinois 60115-1016

Anne D. Davidson
Director, Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic

Description: The Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic provides comprehensive audiological, rehabilitation counseling and speech-language pathology assessment and treatment services to individuals of all ages (from birth on).  Bilingual services are provided in the area speech-language pathology.  The Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic is open year round.

Services and clinical education provided include:

  • Hearing testing
  • Auditory processing evaluations
  • Aural rehabilitation for individuals with acquired or congenital hearing losses
  • Assessment and treatment of children and adults for language, speech, voice, stuttering swallowing, feeding, or aphasia
  • Social skills groups for children with autistic spectrum disorder (late afternoon-early evening)
  • Parent and sibling support groups (autistic spectrum disorder, hearing impairment)
  • Language-Literacy-Listening Team assessment and intervention services
  • Speech-language services to area schools
  • Speech-language and hearing screenings as a service to area and regional schools, hospitals, and community service groups
  • Consultation and in-service education to schools, hospitals and rehabilitation facilities

STEM Outreach

NIU STEM Outreach
Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math
155 N. Third Street, Suite 200
DeKalb, IL 60115

Patricia Sievert, Coordinator
(815) 753-1201

Description: NIU STEM Outreach provides Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math programming to schools and communities in Northern Illinois. It also provides a central web presence for the outreach efforts of the STEM departments & units within NIU.  Our work with adolescents includes summer residential science and engineering camps, after school engineering clubs, partnerships with Girl Scouts of Northen Illinois and local Cub Scouts and Boy Scout troops.  We also work with teachers to encourage them in their efforts to facilitate inquiry based learning in all of their students.

Summer Game Design Day Camp

Hosted by the NIU Digital Convergence Lab
eLearning Services
155 N. 3rd Street, Suite 200
DeKalb, IL 60115

Aline Click, Assistant Director

Description: Using computer-based tools, students take their design ideas through to the prototype stage of a playable video game. The camp will help students develop skills like complex problem solving, working in teams, project management, and using computer software for design.  Much of the software used during the camp is freely available online, and students can continue to use it after the camp.  A full list of resources will be made available to students for further study after the camp.

The Game Design Day Camp will be held on the Northern Illinois University campus in the newly formed Digital Convergence Lab (DCL) located in the Founders Memorial Library.  Part of the mission of the DCL is to provide exciting learning experiences focusing on emerging technologies and 21st century skills for the Northern Illinois community.


Grant North Tower D
(815) 753-1867

Felicia Bohanon
(815) 753-1868

Description: The Upward Bound (UB) Program, in existence at Northern Illinois University since 1966, serves high school students in Aurora and Rockford. The program offers instruction in English, mathematics, science and foreign language; tutoring, academic and cultural enrichment, career exploration, financial aid advisement and support services designed to assist students as they prepare for entry into and ultimate graduation from college. The NIU Upward Bound Program includes a six week summer session and a twenty-six week academic year session. The guiding mission of the Upward Bound Program is to provide motivation and instruction necessary for post-secondary education.