Emerson Elementary School third-grade teacher Abby Ryan has received a $10,000 scholarship from UCB Pharmaceuticals and will be featured in a company promotional video.
Ryan has lived with Crohn's disease since she was 14 months old. Her application placed first among more than 400, according to La Crosse School District officials. She will seek a master's degree at Viterbo University as a reading specialist.
"She has used her medical challenges to inspire students and staff alike," Principal Regina Siegel said.
A former Emerson student, Ryan missed a great deal of school due to her disease and said she was inspired to go into education because of the compassion teachers showed her. She annually discusses Crohn's disease with her students during their nutrition and digestion unit.
UCB Pharmaceuticals will be at Emerson starting at 1:15 p.m. today.