Two Dunham Seniors Selected as U.S. Presidential Scholars Candidates

Two Dunham Seniors Selected as U.S. Presidential Scholars Candidates

February 18, 2019

The Dunham School is proud to announce that The White House Commission on Presidential Scholars has selected seniors Parker Harris and Luke Russell as candidates for the U.S. Presidential Scholars program, one of the highest honors bestowed upon graduating seniors.

Of the approximately 3.6 million students expected to graduate from high school this spring, Harris and Russell are among only about 4,000 selected as candidates for the prestigious program. A committee of educators will now review candidates’ academic achievements, leadership and service activities, and personal essays to select some 800 semifinalists to be announced in April. The final selection of 2019 Presidential Scholars will be made in May.

A Dunham student since the second grade, Parker Harris is the son of Jennifer and J.P. Harris of Baton Rouge. He is a National Merit Finalist and an AP Scholar® with Distinction. In addition to earning a perfect score of 36 on the ACT college entrance exam, Harris placed second in the state on the 2018 National Spanish Exam. He plays in the Dunham Jazz Band, competes on the Robotics team, runs varsity cross country, and is a member of Dunham’s Institute of Leadership.

Luke Russell, the son of Julie and Cliff Russell of Baton Rouge, also earned a perfect score of 36 on the ACT and is a National Merit Finalist, as well as an AP Scholar® with Honor. Enrolled at Dunham since the fourth grade, he is a senior prefect and a member of the varsity cross country and soccer teams, and has appeared in several Dunham theater productions, including You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown; You Can’t Take It With You; and Legally Blonde: The Musical.

The U.S. Presidential Scholars Program was established in 1964 by executive order of the President to honor the nation’s most distinguished graduating high school seniors.  Since its inception, the program has recognized more that 7,000 Presidential Scholars who have demonstrated academic excellence, leadership, and service to their schools and communities.

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