Six West Virginia Students Selected as Presidential Scholars Semifinalists

April 15, 2005

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - Six West Virginia students have been named as United States Presidential Scholars semifinalists. Up to 141 students from across the country are named as Presidential Scholars each year. The federal program is one of the nation’s highest honors for high school seniors.  

This year’s semifinalists are Kathryn Brubaker, The Linsly School, Ohio County; Marissa Cevallos, George Washington High School, Kanawha County; Mitchell Kosowski, Wheeling Park High School, Ohio County; Stephen Mapes, II, Ravenswood High School, Jackson County; Emil Siriwardane, Morgantown High School, Monongalia County; and Kenneth Taubenslag, University High School, Monongalia County.  

Approximately 2,700 students were identified as candidates in this program from nearly 2.8 million graduating high school seniors, and only 550 semifinalists were selected from across the country. These semifinalists form the pool from which the 2005 Presidential Scholars will be selected.  

Students have the opportunity to become Presidential Scholars based on two paths of accomplishment. One hundred twenty-one of the Scholars are selected on the basis of broad academic achievement, while the remaining 20 are selected based on the academic and artistic achievement in the visual, performing or creative arts.  

“Each of these six semifinalists should be commended for their hard work and dedication,” said State Schools Superintendent David Stewart. “This achievement will open the door to numerous educational opportunities and I wish them continued success.”  

Those who are named Presidential Scholars will receive an expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C. where they will meet with government officials, authors, and other accomplished people. They will be awarded the Presidential Scholars medallion at a ceremony sponsored by the White House.  

The United States Presidential Scholars Program was established in 1964 by Executive Order of the President to honor some of our nation’s most distinguished high school seniors.  

For more information about the Presidential Scholars Program, please contact (202) 401-0961, or visit

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