Murkowski Congratulates Alaska’s Presidential Scholars

Senator Praises the Excellence of High Schoolers, Teachers Named

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Alaskan high school seniors Brigit M. Noon and Alec P. Pankow were named as U.S. President Scholars today by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.  Senator Murkowski had the following response to the news:

“Now more than ever, high school students have competing priorities, pressures and interests – not to mention added distractions their parents didn’t have.  That’s why we should especially congratulate Brigit and Alec today as being among only 141 students across the nation to have achieved this honor.  I also encourage each of them to take this recognition as a springboard to even greater heights and hope that they will contribute their talents to our state.  I look forward to meeting them when they come to Washington, D.C. for the awards ceremony.”

Brigit M. Noon is a graduating senior at West Valley High School in Fairbanks, and Alec P. Pankow is a graduating senior from Ketchikan High School. Each scholar nominates an exceptional teacher to win the Teacher Recognition Award.  Noon selected English teacher Ms. Carrier Heimer, and Pankow chose Mrs. Rebecca Bowlen – who teaches English, Folklore and Drama.

“Nearly every one of us can immediately call to mind the teacher’s name who inspired us and pushed us to be better than we thought ourselves capable,” added Murkowski. “I congratulate and honor Ms. Heimer and Mrs. Bowlen for playing that role in the education of these seniors.”

For a complete list of winners nationwide, click here: http://www.ed.gov/news/press-releases/141-students-across-country-named-2012-us-presidential-scholars

Background: Since its creation by Executive Order in 1964, the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program has honored more than 6,000 graduating high school seniors for academic excellence, artistic accomplishments, and civic contributions.  In addition to achieving outstanding scores on the SAT or ACT assessments, applicants are further evaluated on the basis of school reports and transcripts, leadership activities, and contributions to family, school and community.