Superintendent doodles for scholarship dollars inspired by Zoom meetings

ELGIN, Ill. (WLS) -- School District U-46 superintendent Tony Sanders has never taken an art class, but has been doodling since he was a student himself.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic started, many of his meetings are by Zoom, offering his idle hands an opportunity to let loose. He gets inspiration for his art from the meetings he is in when he draws.

"I found myself drifting off from the conversation unless I started doodling, and so I just started doodling during every Zoom meeting I would have with staff and with others," Sanders said.

The superintendent is quick to point out that the doodling is not because he is bored in his meetings. In fact, he said it is just the opposite. It helps him concentrate.

"Good brain research behind it that supports that doodling while you're trying to listen to a conversation can actually intensify your ability to listen," Sanders said.

Sanders said he never starts a plan drawing with a plan. The finished products often reflect the subject of his meeting. After posting some of them on social media, he got several offers to buy them. That led to a coloring book which he sells to help fund scholarships.

When he was put on the spot to draw something for us, at first he drew a blank. He said it is easier during meetings.

"I'm sure there's a psychiatrist out there that might study them and conclude I have some problems," Sanders said.

Twenty students, who are the first in their family to go to college, will get $1000 scholarships from the superintendent's scholarship fund. Not a bad contribution doodling during meetings.
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