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Education Desk
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Education Desk
The Education Desk is our education blog focusing on key areas of news coverage important to the state and its improvement. Evidence of public policy performance and impact will be reported and analyzed. We encourage you to engage in commenting and discussing the coverage of education from pre-natal to Higher Ed.Dusty Rhodes curates this blog that will provide follow-up to full-length stories, links to other reports of interest, statistics, and conversations with you about the issues and stories.About - Additional Education Coverage00000179-2419-d250-a579-e41d385d0000

From Homeless To Stanford: Springfield Teen Eric Mason Is A "Hometown Hero"

Eric Mason, an 18-year-old Lanphier graduate, was recognized by the Illinois State Fair for overcoming incredible odds to become a high achiever.
Amanda Vinicky
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NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS
Eric Mason, an 18-year-old Lanphier graduate, was recognized by the Illinois State Fair for overcoming incredible odds to become a high achiever.

After 163 years, the Illinois State Fair is always adding traditions. New this year is the Hometown Hero Award, recognizing people who "perform selfless acts, overcome incredible odds and reach milestone achievements."

The inaugural winner is a teenager Eric Mason.

Eric just graduated from Springfield's Lanphier High School. And on Saturday, he left to begin college at Stanford University. That means he won't be around to partake in the glory, like joining the Grand Marshal to lead the Illinois State Fair Parade on Thursday, that comes along with being the "hometown hero."

But he was recognized last week at a fair preview day.

Statehouse Bureau Chief Amanda Vinicky caught up with him there, and asked Mason to share his journey.

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