SJA Seniors Selected as Candidates for U.S. Presidential Scholars Program

February 1, 2021

Four St. Johnsbury Academy seniors have been selected as candidates for the United States Presidential Scholars Program. Gavin Ghafoori of St. Johnsbury, Constance Hammer of Monroe, NH, Emma Keenan of Peacham, and Luke Young-Xu of North Haverhill, NH, have been chosen based on their performance on the ACT Assessment or the College Board SAT.


The United States Presidential Scholars Program was established in 1964, by Executive Order of the President, to recognize and honor some of our Nation’s most distinguished graduating high school seniors. In 1979, the program was extended to recognize students who demonstrate exceptional talent in the visual, creative, and performing arts. In 2015, the program was extended to recognize students who demonstrate ability and accomplishment in career and technical education fields. U.S. Presidential Scholars receive one of the Nation’s highest honors for high school students, representing excellence in education and the promise of greatness in young people. In honoring the U.S. Presidential Scholars, the President of the United States symbolically honors all graduating high school seniors of high potential.


Headmaster Sharon Howell said, “This scholarship program recognizes that our students have the potential and talent to contend for a national honor that is extremely special. We are so proud of them.”


In April, the White House Commission on Presidential Scholars will review the applications of all semifinalists, applying the same criteria used by the review committee. The Commission selects up to 161 U.S. Presidential Scholars each year. Since 1964, this unique federal Program has honored more than 7,500 students, who have demonstrated scholarship, leadership, artistic excellence, and selfless service to others.

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