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Campo Verde High Students Earn Academic Awards Worth More Than $5 Million

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Students at Campo Verde High. Recipients of the National Recognition Program85 students at Campo Verde High School have earned the College Board National Recognition, which commends academic honors to underrepresented students. This award highlights the academic achievements of Hispanic, African American and Native American students as well as students who live in rural areas so that they can be recognized for their educational success, stand out in their college applications and find more academic opportunities. As a result, the 85 students could receive a total of more than $5 million in scholarships.

To be eligible for the National Recognition Award, students must attend a high school in a rural area or identify as Black, African American, Latino, Hispanic, Indigenous, or Native. Areas are considered rural based on location data from the National Center for Education Statistics. Applications are available to high school Sophomores or Juniors with a 3.5 GPA who have either taken the PSAT during the application year and scored among the top 10% in their minority category, or have taken two applicable AP courses and scored a 3 or higher. 

Although the National Recognition Award isn’t an academic scholarship itself, the program does reward academic honors that can be included in college and scholarship applications. In fact, many of Arizona’s largest universities provide scholarships to students who have earned the National Recognition Award. Arizona State University awards $16,000 per year for 4 years, the University of Arizona offers $18,000 per year for 4 years, and Northern Arizona University provides full tuition for 4 years in addition to a $1,000 stipend for the first 2 years. 

“Last year, a student approached me asking about the National Recognition Program. I did some research and I found that Campo Verde High is in a rural area, so many of our students were eligible for the award,” said Cassidy Chaney, a Career Center Liason at Campo Verde High School. “I was curious about how many more of our students were impacted by simply not knowing that this program was available. So, now I make sure all of our students who meet the requirements apply for it.”

Understanding the many academic opportunities the program brings to students, Cassidy Chaney works diligently to ensure all eligible students apply for the National Recognition Program. First, Mrs. Chaney checks the previous year’s cutoff PSAT score for the rural category. She then pulls each of the students who have met or exceeded the PSAT cutoff score and identifies each student who has at least two applicable AP test scores. Once Mrs. Chaney has located each of the eligible students, she strongly encourages them to apply for the National Recognition Program.

Applications for the National Recognition Program typically open in April. To learn more about the program, including to check eligibility, visit BigFuture.CollegeBoard.org. To check if a high school is located in a rural area, town, suburb, or city, visit the Department of Education Statistics map.

Story by Tristan Chavez, Photo by Cassidy Chaney