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Two Michigan Students Named 2023 U.S. Presidential Scholars

LANSING—State Superintendent Dr. Michael Rice praised two Michigan high school students who were named 2023 U.S. Presidential Scholars this week.

Simar Bhatia, a student at Portage Central High School, and Adnan Mahir Khan, a student at International Academy in Bloomfield Hills, are among 161 high school seniors in the nation named Presidential Scholars for their accomplishments in academics, the arts, and career and technical education fields.

“This is an extraordinary honor for Simar and Adnan. I am proud of these two Michigan students who received this impressive distinction,” Dr. Rice said. “Reaching this pinnacle among the millions of high school seniors in the United States is a credit to their hard work, commitment, and drive. I also want to acknowledge the attention and support provided by their parents and teachers who inspire and strengthen student learning every day.”

In announcing this 59th class of U.S. Presidential Scholars, U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona said: “U.S. Presidential Scholars have always represented the future of our country and the bright promise it holds. I want each of these remarkable students to know: your passion and intellect, pursuit of excellence, and spirit of service are exactly what our country needs. On behalf of President Biden, I am delighted to join your family, friends, and communities in celebrating your accomplishments. Aim high, share your talents, and continue embracing opportunities to lead as your exciting future unfolds.”

Thirteen other Michigan high school seniors were semi-finalists in this year’s selection process for their accomplishments. They are:

Deepti Aggarwal, Troy High School

Mariae Broome, Interlochen Arts Academy

Lidia Cappelletti, Allen Park High School

Riya Dutta, Troy High School

Nicholas M. Frieler, Detroit Country Day School

Aadit Jain, International Academy in Bloomfield Hills

Jason T. Lin, Cranbrook Kingswood Upper School

Qingqing Ouyang, International Academy in Bloomfield Hills

Juhi Pawar, Plymouth-Canton High School

Krisha Ramani, Novi High School

Sonnet H. Xu, Troy High School

Himani Yarlagadda, Detroit Country Day School

Aeres Zhou, Detroit Country Day School

The White House Commission on Presidential Scholars selects scholars annually based on their academic success, artistic and technical excellence, essays, school evaluations and transcripts, as well as a demonstrated commitment to community service and leadership.

Of the 3.7 million students expected to graduate from high school this year, more than 5,000 candidates qualified for the 2023 awards determined by outstanding performance on the College Board SAT or ACT exams or through nominations made by chief state school officers, other partner recognition organizations and YoungArts, the National Foundation for the Advancement of Artists.

Created in 1964, the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program has honored over 8,000 of the nation’s top-performing students. The program was expanded in 1979 to recognize students who demonstrate exceptional talent in the visual, literary and performing arts. In 2015, the program was again extended to recognize students who demonstrate ability and accomplishment in career and technical education fields.

The Presidential Scholars Class of 2023 will be recognized for their outstanding achievement this summer with an online recognition program.