September 20, 2014 at 12:01 am

2014 Outstanding High School Graduate Scholarship Program

A program to identify, recognize and honor the top seniors from all of Michigan's public and non-public high schools

The Goal

The Detroit News, in cooperation with the Michigan Department of Education and professional educational organizations, is searching for the best high school seniors in the state. For 28 years, The Detroit News has recognized the stateís outstanding high school graduates. Beginning in 2003, The Detroit News and CATCH, Sparky Andersonís Charity for Children, teamed up to enhance the program, adding $1,000 scholarship money for the winning students and contributions to charity.

Selected students will be honored as part of the 29th annual Detroit News Outstanding High School Graduate program. The top two students in each category will be featured in stories and photographs in The Detroit News this spring and will be honored at an awards dinner. Four students in each category will be selected as runners-up, and their names will be published in The News. All nominated students will receive certificates.

We invite you and your teachers to nominate qualifying students using this entry form. The form may be duplicated (limit one student per category, 11 entries per school). Applications must be completely filled out, duplicated and postmarked by March 11, 2014, to be eligible.

Criteria were developed in consultation with academic specialists at the Michigan Department of Education. Grades, test scores, honors, and community involvement are key criteria. The most important criterion, however, will be a demonstrated ability in athletics, health, journalism, language arts, performing arts, science, mathematics, visual arts, vocational-technical or world studies.

The "against all odds" category was added to the recognition program in 1989. In past years, we have honored blind students, physically impaired students, a student who was maintaining a home and raising her younger brother, and a student who overcame substance abuse problems and a bout with cancer. We seek your nomination of students who have overcome and prevailed in the face of extreme adversity.

How to enter

Download the official application form HERE, print it, fill it out, duplicate it and mail both copies to:

The Detroit News/Outstanding Graduates

PO Box 1333

Detroit, MI 48231

Entries must by postmarked by March 11, 2013.

Please direct any questions to Audra Erby-Leake at aerby@detroitnews.com or 313-222-2245.

The Rules

The Detroit News and CATCH, Sparky Anderson's Charity for Children, are seeking to identify and recognize the outstanding graduating high school seniors in Michigan. This program places a premium on demonstrated ability in one of the seven core curriculum areas: in athletics, in vocational-technical education, in journalism and in a special category which recognizes extraordinary achievement in the face of extreme adversity. Each public or non-public high school may submit one candidate in each of the following categories:

Winners will be selected by review panels selected by professional educational organizations. Review criteria are listed on the application form, with the points indicating the relative weighing of each response. The essay response will be used to determine the top students from those selected as finalists.

Athletics

Nominees may come from any sport sanctioned and given varsity status by the Michigan High School Athletic Association. Prime consideration will be given to candidates who: 1) exhibit a high level of athletic skill and participation throughout their high school career, 2) display leadership and sportsmanship on the field and off, and 3) have exhibited strong academic skills.

Health Education

Nominees may be outstanding students in physical education, health education or may be leaders in substance abuse programs in their schools or communities. Prime consideration will be given to students who: 1) exemplify the highest standards of personal health, fitness and leadership, 2) have been recognized through a specific accomplishment, competition or project, and 3) have demonstrated strong ability in their academic studies.

Journalism

Nominees may be involved in any aspect of journalism, including newspapers, yearbooks and broadcast news. Prime consideration will be given to students who: 1) have demonstrated a commitment to the profession through professional work at work or school, or 2) have made a contribution to furthering the goals of a free press or free speech.

Language Arts Education

Nominees may be from any school program in writing, speaking, literature, or any other commonly recognized language arts area, other than journalism. Prime consideration will be given to students who: 1) have published poetry, prose or other forms of written expression at the regional, state or national level, or 2) have demonstrated exceptional ability in debate or other competitive forms for speaking, or 3) have distinguished themselves in the study of literature.

Mathmatics Education

Nominees may be from any area of mathematics. Prime consideration will be given to candidates who: 1) have been recognized in regional, state or national competitions or tests, or 2) have independently demonstrated a superior mathematical ability through the development of a mathematical concept, theorem or exploration of a complex mathematical relationship presented at a conference or in a published article.

Performing Arts Education

Nominees may be from music, dance and theater. Prime consideration will be given to candidates who: 1) have demonstrated extraordinary performing talent and poise through adjudicated processes, 2) have been recognized through a specific accomplishment, competition or public performance, and 3) have demonstrated strong academic ability.

Science Education

Nominees may be from any area of science. Prime consideration will be given to candidates who: 1) have been recognized in regional, state or national competitions or tests, or 2) have completed a scientific project which creates new information in a scientific field and has been documented and confirmed by recognized experts in the field.

Visual Arts Education

Nominees may be from any of the visual arts, interdisciplinary work in multiple art forms or any other recognized art form. Prime consideration will be given to candidates who: 1) have demonstrated extraordinary talent and creativity through adjudicated processes, 2) have been recognized through a specific accomplishment, competition or public showing, and 3) have demonstrated strong academic ability.

Vocational-Technical Education

Nominees may be from any vocational-technical education program. Prime consideration will be given to students who: 1) have demonstrated outstanding performance and leadership abilities related to their chosen occupational field, and 2) extraordinary achievement in academic work, job-related experience, lab training or related projects.

World Studies Education

Nominees may be from any social science, history, geography, foreign language or government/civics areas of instruction. Prime consideration will be given to students who: 1) have demonstrated extraordinary achievement through competitions or tests, or 2) have completed and been recognized for special projects in the community such as historical research or community service, or 3) have advanced global or multi-cultural understanding through the personal creation of a particular activity or projects.

Special Distinction

Against all odds nominees may be from any field of study or school program. Prime consideration will be given to students who: 1) have overcome extreme adversity due to economic, social, cultural, physical or mental hardship, 2) have prevailed with strength and dignity, exhibiting extraordinary accomplishments and achievement in their chosen field of endeavor, and 3) have demonstrated great potential. In this category, the special circumstances will be taken into consideration when weighing responses in the review criteria.