Three Massachusetts high school seniors were named part of the 56th class of US Presidential Scholars, an award recognizing students’ accomplishments in academics, the arts, and technical education fields, US Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos announced in a statement Thursday .
The students include Saviel Ortiz, a Lawrence resident, from Greater Lawrence Technical School in Andover; Amelia Ao, a Wayland resident, from Wayland High School; and Jaiden David Edelman, a West Tisbury resident, from Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School in Oak Bluffs, the statement said.
“These exemplary young people have excelled inside the classroom and out,” DeVos said, referring to all 161 award recipients. “And, while they are facing unprecedented challenges as they graduate from high school into a world that looks much different than it did just a few months ago, their determination, resilience, and commitment to excellence will serve them well as they pursue their next steps.”
Presidential Scholars are comprised of one young man and woman from each state, DC, and Puerto Rico, the statement said. Also included are US families abroad, 15 students chosen at-large, 20 Scholars in the Arts, and 20 Scholars in Career and Technical Education. Ortiz was named a Scholar in Career and Technical Education.
Scholars are chosen annually by the White House Commission on Presidential Scholars for their academic success, artistic and technical excellence, school evaluations and transcripts, community service, and leadership, the statement said.
Over 5,600 of the 3.6 million graduating high school seniors qualified for the award this year based on outstanding performances on the SAT or ACT or through nominations, the statement said.
Award recipients will be honored during the summer as public health circumstances permit, the statement said.
Matt Berg can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @mattberg33.