Matthew Ding Named An Iowa U.S. Presidential Scholars Semifinalist

(As posted by the Iowa Department of Education)

Matthew Ding

JHS senior Matthew Ding

The state of Iowa has seven semifinalists for the prestigious 2020 U.S. Presidential Scholars program, including one student from Johnston High School. They are:

  • Matthew Ding, Johnston High School, Johnston
  • Animesh Suyash Joshi, Valley High School, West Des Moines
  • Elizabeth Catherine Meyer, Heelan High School, Sioux City
  • Cynthia Salinas Cappellano, Thomas Jefferson High School, Council Bluffs
  • Ellie Jane Schultes, Exira-EHK High School, Elk Horn
  • Blake Ronald Van Der Kamp, PCM High School, Monroe*
  • Fez Zafar, Theodore Roosevelt High School, Des Moines

* Semifinalist for U.S. Presidential Scholar in Career and Technical Education

From nearly 3.6 million graduating high school seniors from across the country, over 5,600 students were identified as candidates in this program, and 621 semifinalists were selected. These semifinalists form the pool from which the 2020 U.S. Presidential Scholars will be chosen.

The 2020 U.S Presidential Scholars will be announced in May.

The U.S. Presidential Scholars Program was established in 1964, by executive order of the President, to recognize and honor some of our nation’s most distinguished graduating high school seniors. 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 as Presidential Scholars, one of the nation’s highest honors for high school students.

Congratulations to Matthew on this prestigious honor!