The National Hispanic Recognition Program (NHRP) has identified 12 local high school seniors as National Hispanic Scholars.
Only 986 students were recognized either as Scholar or Honorable Mention in California, with only approximately 5300 selected nationwide.
The NHRP first identifies students based on their high PSAT scores from their Junior year. Then their school is contacted to verify the student’s ethnicity as at least 25 percent Hispanic/Latino.
If the student has a 3.5 or greater grade point average they are named Hispanic Scholars. A grade point average of 3.0 to 3.49 earns a student Hispanic Honorable Mention.
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All of the local students were National Hispanic Scholars:
Max Archuleta, Canyon High School
Justyn Cason, Academy of the Canyons
Lauren Cruz, Emily Aranda, Hart High School
Jessie Welter, Pilar Araujo, Saugus High School
Alexandria Brill, Deborah Garcia, Michael Smith, Valencia High School
Amanda Munoz, Sandra Chavez, Juan Garcia, Golden Valley High School
Although the NHRP does not provide a financial reward, being named is an important academic recognition. The program sends a list of all recognized students to subscribing colleges and universities that are particularly interested in academically outstanding seniors of Hispanic/Latino heritage.
The NHRP was started in 1983 as an adjunct to the National Merit Scholarship and the National Achievement Scholarship, which honors high-achieving African-American students.
Sal Frias, Principal at Golden Valley High School says honoring successful Hispanic/Latino students is important.
"We do need to get people from various groups to be out there in society and performing and being role models and to be the future leaders and be the motivators and represent the groups, so they can show the diversity and the strength of our diversity in a very positive way in society today,” Frias said.
Pilar Araujo, from Saugus High School, is also a semifinalist for the National Merit Scholarship.
Max Archuleta, from Canyon High School, participated in the KHTS sponsored Sacramento Road Trip to meet with legislators in Sacramento. He is also starting running back for the Canyon High School Varsity football team.