University Park, IL,
10:14 AM

Laila Atra-Yassin named 2023 Lincoln Laureate


Laila Atra-Yassin (front) 

receiving cord at 2022 DDP 

cording ceremony

Laila Atra-Yassin, a Dual Degree Program (DDP) student and an active volunteer in her community, is the 2023 Lincoln Laureate.

Laila, a Psychology major with a minor in practical and professional ethics set to graduate in May 2024, transferred to Governors State University (GovState) from Joliet Junior College as part of the DDP. She has spent countless hours volunteering at organizations that she’s passionate about, including Sharefest Will County, a nonprofit organization that delivers groceries to individuals in need in Will County and the Muhsen nonprofit organization, which serves children and adults with intellectual, physical or mental disabilities.

Laila, who currently lives in Manhattan, Illinois, also established an alumni mentorship program at her former high school. Within the program, volunteers dedicate their time to share their college experience and careers, proofread college essays, help with coursework and provide social/emotional support.

Since transferring to GovState, Laila has excelled in her courses, earning a 3.96 GPA, and has been the recipient of multiple scholarships. She has found GovState to be full of opportunities and staffed with directors and professors committed to the success of their students.

“The experiences I have had this past year have shown me that the pathway to success does not stop at getting good grades, but involves taking part in community service events, attending leadership courses and meeting with different people around campus.”

Each fall, the Lincoln Academy of Illinois selects an outstanding senior from each of the four-year-degree-granting institutions of higher learning in the state as student laureate. The laureates are honored for their leadership and service in addition to their overall excellence in both curricular and co-curricular activities. For their outstanding achievements, they are rewarded the Abraham Lincoln Civic Engagement Award, bestowed by the governor. 

Laila is humbled and honored to receive the award, saying “Helping people has always been a passion of mine so to have even been nominated is an accomplishment on its own.”

Following her graduation in the spring, Laila plans to pursue a master’s degree in occupational therapy

Congratulations, Laila!