Sara Hard, president of the Northern Illinois University Student Education Association, has been selected by the Illinois Education Association (IEA) as its 2017 Student of the Year. Hard also serves as chair of the IEA’s statewide student program.

Hard was recognized as student of the year on Thursday (3/30/17) at the annual Representative Assembly of the IEA. Some 1,200 delegates, guests and state dignitaries attended the event at the Sheraton Grand Chicago.

“Sara Hard embodies the three core values that she instills in all student IEA program events: community outreach, political action, and teacher quality,” said IEA President Cinda Klickna. “She is recognized by her peers as a devoted leader who cares about public education and is active in making it the best it can be. She has been a wonderful advocate for her student chapter. We are proud to honor her as our student of the year.”

In making the selection, the IEA awards committee noted that Hard is in her fourth year of student leadership. She has been active in political activities and has served on several committees of the state IEA.

The IEA Student of the Year award is named after former IEA President Bob Haisman. The IEA is the state’s largest organization of school employees, representing more than 135,000 members.