Seniors honored as MO Scholars

Melissa Albers and Erica Swanson are nominated by FHC to be recognized as part of the Missouri Scholars 100 program


Eden Gunderson

Senior Erica Swanson, one of the two students nominated by FHC, was chosen to be a part of the 2014 MO Scholars 100. She will be recognized for her achievements at an honorary luncheon in Columbia next month.

Simran Kooner, Staff Reporter

Every year, MO Scholars 100, a program sponsored by the Missouri Association of Secondary School Principals (MASSP), invites schools across Missouri to nominate two candidates for statewide recognition. Each nominated student must meet a wide variety of academic criteria and also exemplify characteristics of an ideal high school citizen. Seniors Melissa Albers and Erica Swanson were nominated by FHC to receive this recognition.

Each school in the state is given the opportunity to nominate two students from which the MASSP then chooses 100 students to honor as MO Scholars. The selection is based primarily on a formula using both the student’s GPA and standardized test score(s).

The counselors choose who will be nominated based on the designated academic criteria. After they pick two students, both of them are required to fill out an application detailing the activities they have participated in, leadership roles they have assumed, and any service or volunteer work they have completed around the community.

“It was a pleasure to even be nominated and to have actually been selected is exciting,” Albers said. “I’m thankful to all the people who allow me to succeed in school and my activities.”

In order to qualify for nomination, the student is first required to meet the ten levels of criteria of an “Academic Decathlon” assessing the student’s academic strengths. To meet the requirements of the decathlon, the student must have a GPA of at least 3.750 and a minimum ACT score of 29 or a minimum SAT score of 1900. They must additionally be ranked in the top ten percent of their class and also have completed a rigorous curriculum with a variety of upper level courses in math, english, science, and foreign language.

In addition to meeting the above mentioned academic criteria, nominated students must be exemplary school citizens. This includes having excellent attendance and being involved in the high school activity program. Those nominated are generally students who hold a leadership position in a club or have earned a varsity letter in a sport.

“I met the criteria because of my leadership roles in varsity sports and clubs as my well as my volunteer work at St. Joseph Health Center,” Swanson said. “Also, I met the academic requirements.”

Swanson and Albers were chosen to receive the honor from among several hundred other students at FHC. Only four other students in the entire Francis Howell School District were selected for the 2014 MO Scholars 100, one of which received an Honorable Mention.

“It it truly an honor,” Swanson said. “I know there are a lot of really smart kids here at FHC, in FHSD and the state of Missouri, so being selected for this award means a lot.”

Both students will be recognized for their accomplishments during a luncheon on Sunday, April 27 at the Holiday Inn Executive Center in Columbia, MO. Swanson and Albers, along with Dr. Sonny Arnel and both their families, plan on attending.