Four Lawrence High School seniors have been named semifinalists in the Presidential Scholars Program, which provides the highest federal honor given to graduating high school seniors.
Adam Hefty, Daniel Low, Kari Rogg and Sean Vellucci are among approximately 2,500 semifinalists selected from more than 2.5 million high school seniors nationwide.
The students were selected for their exceptional performance on either the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) or American College Testing (ACT) exams. The selection also was based on students' essays, self-assessments, descriptions of activities, school recommendations and school transcripts.
A panel of educators will review those submissions and select 500 finalists in April. Final selection of 141 scholars will be made by the White House Commission on Presidential Scholars, a group of some 40 citizens appointed by the president.
HEFTY, THE son of Marla Hefty, has been active in LHS Orchestra, the school's A Cappella Choir, debate, forensics, the chess club and the LHS Alliance for Social Awareness. His honors include being champion of the regional Citizen Bee and placing second in the state piano contest of the Kansas Music Educators Assn.
Hefty plans to attend either Harvard or Pennsylvania's Swarthmore College and major in philosophy and government.
Low, the son of Denise and Don Low, has been active in soccer, tennis, the Mammoth Club, Quiz Bowl and the Spanish Club. He has been named a Kansas Honors Scholar, a Kansas University Summerfield Scholar and a National Merit Semifinalist, and he belongs to the National Honor Society.
Low would like to attend Harvard or the University of California-Berkeley. He has not decided on a major.
ROGG, THE daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Roger Rogg, has been active in debate, forensics and the Kansas City Archdiocesan Youth Council, and she served for three semesters as a peer tutor in the LHS Writing Center. She also has participated in a biochemistry-genetics research project at KU under Orley Taylor, professor of entomology. Her honors include taking first in the state piano competition of the Kansas Music Educators Assn.
Rogg plans to attend KU and prepare for medical school.
Vellucci, son of Mr. and Mrs. Alfred Vellucci, has been active in the Alliance for Social Awareness, the Mammoth Club, the chess club and the writer's club, and he has been a member of the National Forensics League. His honors include taking first place in the Shawnee Mission West Novice Debate Tournament in 1989.
Vellucci said he would like to attend the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the California Institute of Technology or Northwestern University in Chicago. Vellucci, who already has taken a KU course in differential equations, plans to major in some area of math and science.