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Local Teen Named 'Disney Dreamer'

15-year-old Niani Scott was chosen from among thousands of applicants to attend the four-day event at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida.

A camera crew followed Bolingbrook teen Niani Scott around, documenting her time at the Disney Dreamers Academy at the Walt Disney World Resort. Credit: Submitted photo
A camera crew followed Bolingbrook teen Niani Scott around, documenting her time at the Disney Dreamers Academy at the Walt Disney World Resort. Credit: Submitted photo
Bolingbrook teen Niani Scott was one of just 100 teens from across the U.S. chosen to attend the Disney Dreamers Academy earlier this month at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orland, Florida.

The four-day event is dedicated to helping teens achieve their dreams, and is the result of a partnership between actor/comedian Steve Harvey and ESSENCE Magazine. More than 10,000 teens submitted essays in the hopes of being chosen for the Dreamers Academy. The education and mentoring program offers hands-on learning experiences for the "Dreamers."

Scott, a sophomore at Chicago Hope Academy, was also one of four students chosen to receive the Steve Harvey scholarship, and was the only Dreamer to be interviewed live on the Steve Harvey Morning Show.


The 15-year-old talked to Harvey about her plans to attend Columbia University in New York, and her dreams of becoming a TV journalist.

Asked what she hoped to get out of the Disney Dreamers Academy, Scott told Harvey, "I hope to develop better writing skills and better interview [skills]."

Since she was a Steve Harvey scholarship recipient,  a camera crew from Harvey's TV show followed Scott around, interviewing her throughout the four-day academy.

The Bolingbrok teen was also part of a journalism team that worked with ESSENCE Magazine editors to create a magazine for the event. 

Impressed with Scott's poise and smarts, Harvey joked with the teen about his 16-year-old son.

"I'm not saying you should date my son, I'm saying you should tutor him," he teased.
Jamilah A. Scott March 20, 2014 at 06:14 PM
I am unbelievably proud of Niani!!

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