Hundreds participated throughout the state, but ultimately only a choice few could win top honors. Dozens of high school seniors from throughout Utah were recently recognized in the annual Sterling Scholar Award competition. Two students from Cache County received top honors while two others received runner-up recognition among students along the Wasatch Front. The competition seeks to recognize the top students in 14 different categories.
Maya Dehlin, a Sky View senior from North Logan, received the top honor for English. Dehlin scored a 31 on her ACT, has a cumulative GPA of 4.0 and is ranked first in her class. She has also been published in “Bullying Under Attack” and was the winner of the nationwide Teen Ink writing contest.
Trenton Chang, a Logan High senior from Logan, received the top honor for Instrumental Music. Chang has not only received a scholarship from the Chopin Foundation of the United States, received third place in the American Prize for Solo Piano, but is also a three-time Utah Symphony Salute to Youth soloist and an outstanding academic student. Chang scored a 36 on the ACT, has a 4.0 GPA and is ranked first in his class. Chang was also recently recognized at a recent board meeting of the Logan School Board.
Two other students from Cache Valley received Runner-Up recognition. Ethan Smith, a resident of Lewiston who attends Logan High, was a runner-up in the Business & Marketing category. Jacob Major, a resident of Avon who attends Mountain Crest, was a runner-up in the Skilled & Technical Sciences category.
According to the site’s website, “a Sterling Scholar is a high school senior who is publicly recognized and awarded for the pursuit of excellence in scholarship, leadership and citizenship in the State of Utah.” The annual recognition of student academic and service pursuits was started in 1968 by the Deseret News and has continued every year since.
Students build a portfolio of their accomplishments and undergo an interview and screening process at the high school level and then the state level. Categories include Business & Marketing, Computer Technology, Dance, English, Family & Consumer Science, Instrumental Music, Mathematics, Science, Skilled & Technical Sciences, Social Science, Speech/Theater Arts/Forensics, Visual Arts, Vocal Performance and World Languages.