Four Lawrence district students — two from Free State High School and two from Lawrence High School — have been awarded special recognition from the College Board, Superintendent Anthony Lewis announced during Monday’s school board meeting.
Free State senior Michael Bido was named both a National African American Recognition Award recipient and National Hispanic Recognition Award recipient.
Free State senior Silvio Liu was named a National Hispanic Recognition Award recipient.
Lawrence High senior Arran Kennedy Orive was named a National Hispanic Recognition Award recipient.
Lawrence High senior Ayotunde Obadare was named a National African American Recognition Award recipient.
The College Board National Recognition Programs honor underrepresented students and “address the systemic barriers to higher education” they face, according to BigFuture, an online resource that assists high schoolers with postsecondary success.
Sophomores and juniors who identify as African American or Black, Hispanic or Latinx, or Indigenous are eligible for the program, as well as those who attend high school in a rural area or small town.
Students who apply must have a 3.5 or higher GPA or have scored in the top 10% on the PSAT/NMSQT or PSAT 10 exams, or have earned a score of 3 or higher on at least two Advanced Placement exams.
After eligible sophomores and juniors apply, award winners are notified at the beginning of the next school year, giving them enough time to include the honor in their scholarship and college-entry applications.
“We want to honor the hard work of these students through the College Board National Recognition Programs. This program creates a way for colleges and scholarship programs to connect directly with underrepresented students who they are hoping to reach,” Tarlin Ray, College Board senior vice president of BigFuture, said in a news release.
“We hope the award winners and their families celebrate this prestigious honor and it helps them plan for their big future.”
The College Board in August 2022 awarded 62,000 students from across the country with these academic honors for their outstanding work in their classrooms and on College Board assessments, according to the news release. More than 180,000 students representing all 50 states were eligible to apply.
The students will be invited to be recognized at the school board’s Sept. 26 meeting, district spokesperson Julie Boyle said via email.