Awarded to an undergraduate student in secondary education with an English education teaching degree who will be student teaching in the academic year following the award. Preference for students who are residents of Iowa with a minimum GPA of 3.0 and demonstrated financial need. Established by Richard and Sandy Wagner in memory of their daughter Emily (BA '97).

More about Emily C. Wagner

This award was established to honor Emily Wagner, a vibrant woman and exceptional educator who inspired many around her.  Emily died in May 2010 at the age of 30 after a courageous struggle with cancer.  She was admired for her zest for life, love of language, and superb teaching skills.  Originally from Des Moines, Iowa, Emily graduated from Roosevelt High School and the University of Iowa, where she majored in English and communications.  She joined Teach for America and taught middle school language arts in Phoenix, AZ while earning her M.A. at Arizona State University.  Moving to Chicago, Emily continued her career as a language arts teacher at Francis Granger Middle School in Aurora.

 Emily had a passion for reading and writing, and she took great pride in choosing novels for her class, selecting books that she knew would deeply resonate with her students.  Her love for rich vocabulary and written expression influenced hundreds of students who entered her classroom during her seven-year teaching career.  She set high academic standards for her students, motivating them with her sense of humor and her ability to inspire them to reach their full potential.

Recent recipients

  • 2017 - Sierra Kome
  • 2016 - Will Kapp
  • 2015 - Catherine Haman
  • 2014 - Amelia Stuhr
  • 2013 - Lydia Adolphson
  • 2012 - Rachel Dudley