Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner recently announced the 2018 outstanding college students who were honored by the Lincoln Academy of Illinois. The Academy recognized these students during the annual Student Laureate Convocation at the Old State Capitol in Springfield.
 
Malini Wijesinghe is a Bradley University senior and triple major in biochemistrySpanish and philosophy from Saint Paul, Minn. While being a standout in the classroom with a 3.98 cumulative grade-point average and six consecutive semesters on the Dean's List, she's also involved in various organizations on campus. This includes her roles as president of the Bradley Clean Up Crew and Student Athlete Advisory Committee - Braves Council.
 
Wijesinghe has a strong presence on Bradley's Tennis Team as well. In 2018 she was selected for the ITA Arthur Ashe Leadership and Sportsmanship Award, Carl Grose Service Award, State Farm Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) Good Neighbor Award and MVC Singles Player of the Week. For two consecutive years she was named Bradley Tennis Team's Most Valuable Player and for three consecutive years, she was named an MVC All-Conference Scholar-Athlete. Wijesinghe has also won the American Chemical Society Division of Analytical Chemistry Undergraduate Award and been named an Outstanding Student by the World Languages and Cultures Department at Bradley.
 
“President Lincoln’s legacy is a reminder of the power of public service and civic engagement here in Illinois and across the country,” said Governor Rauner. “The students chosen to receive this honor have exemplified the principles and ideals of the greatest Illinoisan through their hard work and dedication to their schools and communities.”
 
The Lincoln Academy’s Abraham Lincoln Civic Engagement Awards are presented for excellence in curricular and extracurricular activities to seniors from each of the state’s four-year, degree-granting colleges and universities, as well as one student from the community colleges in Illinois. At the Student Laureate Convocation, each student received a Student Laureate Medallion, a $1,000 educational grant and a certificate of achievement. This is the 44th year Lincoln Academy has celebrated students’ excellence in Illinois.