SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Some local high schoolers have been recommended for one of the nation’s highest honors, the United States Presidential Scholars Program.

The program recognizes and honors some of America’s most distinguished graduating high school seniors.

Aiden Maxwell of Jenkins High School. (Photo provided by SCCPS)

Five students in Savannah and Richmond Hill have been nominated to represent their districts as United States Presidential Scholars. 

In Savannah, nominees are Aiden Maxwell, of Jenkins High School, Margaret Wade and Kenzie Kurdys – both of Savannah Arts Academy – and Richard Witbeck, of St. Andrew’s on the Marsh.

In Richmond Hill, Amy L. Li of Richmond Hill High School has been nominated.

To be eligible for the program, three components are considered: General, Arts and CTE.

Part of the general component requires students to score exceptionally well on either the SAT of the College Board or the ACT of the American College Testing Program.

Margaret Wade of the Savannah Arts Academy. (Photo provided by SCCPS)

For the arts component, part of the requirement is for students to demonstrate academic achievement and talent in the visual, creative and performing arts.

Part of the CTE criteria is for students to demonstrate academic achievement in career and technical programs and be nominated by the state’s Chief State School Officer.

The U.S. Presidential Scholars Program was established in 1964, by executive order of the [resident, to recognize and honor some of our nation’s most distinguished graduating high school seniors.

Kenzie Kurdys of the Savannah Arts Academy. (Photo provided by SCCPS

In 1979, the program was extended to recognize students who demonstrate exceptional talent in the visual, creative and performing arts.

In 2015, the program was again extended to recognize students who demonstrate ability and accomplishment in career and technical education fields.

Each year, up to 161 students are named Presidential Scholars. The district nominees will now move forward into the state selection process. 

The students will be notified if they have been selected as semi-finalists by mid-April.