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DHS senior named semifinalist in U.S. Presidential Scholars Program

Presidential_Scholars Semifinalist        Dawson High School senior Helen Wang was recently named one of only 621 semifinalists in the 2019 in U.S. Presidential Scholars Program. The semifinalists were selected from nearly 5,300 candidates expected to graduate from U.S. high schools this year.

       “It is an honor to be selected for the next round of the program, and I'm excited to hear the final announcement of Scholars in May,” Wang said.

       The application and selection process was lengthy and included several steps.

       “First, I applied through the Texas Education Agency to be nominated and was one of 20 students selected by the Texas Commissioner of Education to be invited to apply for the national program,” Wang said. “I had to submit my SAT score, a secondary school report (transcript, AP scores, etc.), activities and work experiences, along with several essays.”

       Inclusion in the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program is one of the highest honors bestowed upon graduating high school seniors. Scholars are selected on the basis of superior academic and artistic achievements, leadership qualities, strong character and involvement in community and school activities.

       The Commission on Presidential Scholars will select the finalists and the U.S. Department of Education will announce the Scholars in May. Annually, up to 161 U.S. Presidential Scholars are chosen from among that year's senior class, representing excellence in education and the promise of greatness in America's youth.

       All Scholars will be invited to Washington, DC in June for the National Recognition Program, featuring various events and enrichment activities and culminating in the presentation of the Presidential Scholar Medallion during a White House-sponsored ceremony.

       About the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program

       The U.S. Presidential Scholars Program was established in 1964 by Executive Order of the President to recognize some of our nation's most distinguished graduating seniors for their accomplishments in many areas: academic success, leadership, and service to school and community. It was expanded in 1979 to recognize students demonstrating exceptional scholarship and talent in the visual, creative, and performing arts. In 2015, the program was expanded once again to recognize students who demonstrate ability and accomplishment in career and technical fields.

       For more information about the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program, parents and students can call the U.S. Presidential Scholars Office at 507 .931.8345, or send an e-mail to