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Fort Bend & Sugar Land Schools, Sports, and Students

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(Front row) Arielle Schochler and Victoria Rigsby; (back row) Katherine Minter, BRC committee member; Katharine Hunton, BRC committee member; Renee Jaramillo, FBJSL treasurer; Tanya Pal, FBJSL secretary; Tin Salas, BRC committee member; and Laura Thompson, FBJSL president.

(Front row) Arielle Schochler and Victoria Rigsby; (back row) Katherine Minter, BRC committee member; Katharine Hunton, BRC committee member; Renee Jaramillo, FBJSL treasurer; Tanya Pal, FBJSL secretary; Tin Salas, BRC committee member; and Laura Thompson, FBJSL president.

FBJSL AWARDS SCHOLARSHIPS TO HIGH SCHOOL GIRLS FOR OUTSTANDING VOLUNTEERISM - The Fort Bend Junior Service League presented Arielle Schochler and Victoria Rigsby with college scholarships in the amount of $1,000 each for their outstanding volunteer efforts in Fort Bend County. The recipients were chosen from a highly qualified pool of applicants from public, private and parochial schools throughout Fort Bend County.

Victoria, a senior at Fort Bend Christian Academy, has contributed more than 700 hours of community and school service hours throughout high school. She is a member of the National Honor Society, National English Honor Society, Mu Alpha Theta, president of Big Sister/Little Sister, and class representative for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. She has been awarded the ACSI Distinguished Student in Christian Service and Academics and has participated in varsity sports including track, soccer, dance and as an athletic trainer for the football team. She has been on several mission trips both in and out of the country. She will attend Texas A&M University in the fall.

Arielle, a student at Needville High School, has contributed more than 1,000 hours of community and school service hours throughout her high school career. She is a member of the National Honor Society, Spanish Club, Student Council, FFA, Project Graduation and serves as historian of the History Club. She has participated in the Fort Bend Youth in Philanthropy, St. Michaels’ Catholic Church Youth Ministry, Needville 4-H as secretary, Fort Bend County 4-H Youth Council, 4-H Vet Science Program sponsored by Texas A&M University, Junior Livestock Committee for the Fort Bend County Fair, and Needville Youth Fair. She will attend Wharton Junior College and then transfer to Texas A&M University in Galveston to major in animal science.
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Winners of the Save Water Art Contest are pictured with Club officers.

Winners of the Save Water Art Contest are pictured with Club officers.

STUDENTS PARTICIPATE IN SAVE WATER ART CONTEST - The We Care Club and Yaowu Zhang Art Studio held the 1st annual “Save Water Art Contest” to celebrate National Green Week and National Earth Day. More than 50 students from the greater Houston area and Fort Bend County participated in the contest and exhibited their art, which expressed “Save Water” stewardship.

Founder and president of We Care Club Karen Yang, Vice president Anjali Chikkula, and secretary Rowena Chang held the award ceremony at Yaowu Zhang Art Studio. Judge Yaowu Zhang named three winners and seven honorable mentions.

We Care Club is a youth leading service club founded by a Dulles High School freshman under the nonprofit organization WE Care Act.
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(L-R) Jordyn Hunter, Dynamo Justin Neese and Jillian Hunter, Parks Elementary Parent Center coordinator.

(L-R) Jordyn Hunter, Dynamo Justin Neese and Jillian Hunter, Parks Elementary Parent Center coordinator.

FBISD STUDENTS LEARN SOCCER MOVES FROM HOUSTON DYNAMO - Heritage Rose Elementary School hosted a free soccer clinic with the Houston Dynamo soccer team, welcoming more than 50 Fort Bend ISD students in grades 1-5. The clinic helped promote the Dynamo Youth Programs’ efforts in helping youth lead a more active lifestyle, while teaching students the fundamentals of soccer.

Parents watched as students learned to dribble and drop kick a soccer ball, score a goal, and other techniques of the game. Tyenise Blackmon, HRE parent center coordinator, and Stephanie Kellam, UnitedHealthcare Student Wellness coordinator, provided parents with information on maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Parents received healthy recipes and materials about eating healthy on a budget. Event coordinators also raffled Dynamo game tickets and Kroger gift cards.
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STAFFORD HS STUDENTS RECEIVE SCHOLARSHIPS - Three Stafford High School students were awarded Youth in Philanthropy scholarships at the Investment in Youth Luncheon. Seniors Kenny Cao received $600; Carla Rodriguez, $1,250; and Scott Almaguer, $2,500. These students were among seniors representing 17 Fort Bend County schools awarded $45,000 in scholarships at the luncheon.

Men for Change also awarded three scholarships to Stafford seniors. Morgan Shelton was awarded $4,000; Carlton Anumnu, $1,000; and Charles Anumnu, $1,000.
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Members of the First Colony Swim team at the Texas Age Group State Championship.

Members of the First Colony Swim team at the Texas Age Group State Championship.

FIRST COLONY SWIM PLACES 15TH IN STATE

First Colony Swim team participated in the Texas Age Group State Championship in March, taking 15th place out of 70 teams from around the state of Texas. Leading the way were Darrin Asphall and Ashley Harmon, who both achieved new NCSA Junior National Cuts, moving them up to a new level in their swimming.

FCST also had eight swimmers qualify top 8: Darrin Asphall, 1,000-yard Free, 200-yard Free, 500-yard Free, and 1,650-yard Free; Brittany Bui, 200-yard Fly; Ashley Harmon, 200 Yard Fly; Carlos Monteagudo, 1,000-yard Free and 1,650-yard Free; Thuc Nguyen, 50-yard Breast; Bryan Pan, 500-yard Free, 200-yard Free, 100-yard Fly;  Peyton Quattlebaum, 1,000-yard Free; and Barrett Roberts, 200-yard Back.
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(Front row, l-r) Kenneth Lee, Eric Li; (back row) contest sponsors.

(Front row, l-r) Kenneth Lee, Eric Li; (back row) contest sponsors.

FORT BEND ISD STUDENT WINS STATE MATHCOUNTS COMPETITION

Fort Settlement Middle School students are continuing the legacy and tradition of math mastery after winning the 2013 Texas State Mathcounts Competition. The FSMS team included Eric Li, Kevin Rao, Jefferson Ren, Byron Xu, and Coach Kenneth Lee.

Li, an eighth-grade student, became the newest Texas Mathcounts champion after defeating more than 280 talented middle school students who advanced to the state final. Li ranked first in both the written test (with a perfect score) and the countdown round.  Also placing were Jeffrey Huang of Rice Middle School (second place); Pranay Mittal of Doerre Intermediate School (third place); and FSMS’ Byron Xu (fourth place). These four students formed this year’s Texas National Team and competed at nationals in Washington, D.C.

The FSMS team also earned the third-place team trophy after competing against 70 other teams. Kevin Rao ranked 23rd and Jefferson Ren placed 42nd in the competition.
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Carolyn (right) with Rice University graduate student Daniel Hashim.

Carolyn (right) with Rice University graduate student Daniel Hashim.

GT MENTORSHIP SENIOR EARNS LAURA ALLARD FUTURE VISION SCHOLARSHIP

Carolyn Ramirez, a Gifted/Talented Mentorship student and Austin High School senior, is the recipient of a 2013 Texas Association of Gifted and Talented/Laura Allard Future Vision Scholarship, a $2,500 scholarship is awarded annually to one graduating GT high school senior who has demonstrated outstanding academic achievement, possesses a strong sense of purpose and clearly defined goals, and has a long-term plan for achieving these goals. Carolyn’s strong commitment for leadership, passion for engineering, and remarkable social consciousness helped earn her this prestigious scholarship award.
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FBISD’S 2013 NATIONAL MERIT FINALISTS NAMED

Fort Bend Independent School District announced the names of 47 FBISD students who have been named finalists in the 2013 National Merit Scholarship Program. To put that number in perspective, Fort Bend ISD has one of the highest percentages of National Merit Finalists among the larger school districts in Texas.

Forty-seven FBISD students are among the 15,000 Semifinalists nationwide notified by mail of their advancement to finalist standing. The pool of Semifinalists represents less than 1 percent of U.S. high school seniors and includes the highest scoring entrants in each state. The number of finalists varies each year according to the allocation for the state that is designated by the National Merit Corporation.

Fort Bend ISD’s 2013 National Merit finalists by campus are: Austin High School – Ryan Ding, Steven Haussmann, Anthony Hresko, Azim Pothiawala, Yash Tarkunde, Courtney Walker, Tucker Westfall, Lawrence Wu, and Travis Yeh; Clements High School – Sarah Bernardo, Steven Gutzwiller, Christopher Herzog, Megan Kallus, Naureen Kheraj, Kimberly Khoo, Claire Kimutis, Anna Kong, Maxwell Lee, Chang Liu, Quan Nguyen, Alexandra Parsons, James Paul, Jack Ren, Lilly Shen, Kyle Smith, Benjamin Tu, Brian Wang, Cassie Wang, Haotian Wu, Sang Xie and Samuel Younan; Dulles High School – Daniel Fan, Peter Feng, Kevin Javier, Jonathan Keller, Jorge Martorell, Robert Shen, Sarah Sun and Emily Wu; Hightower High School – Sanjiv Gopalkrishnan; Kempner High School – Theresa Cockerham, Haley Escamilla, Brittany Irizarry and Christopher Sabbagh; and Travis High School – Swathi Ariyapadi, Priyanka Chandraker and Elizabeth Gerzina.
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Natalia-Kapacinskas

NATALIA KAPACINSKAS RECOGNIZED BY SCHOLASTIC ART & WRITING AWARDS

Natalia Kapacinskas, a junior at Fort Bend Christian Academy, received a silver medal for persuasive writing in the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards of 2013, presented by the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers. Of the 230,000 submissions received, fewer than 1 percent were recognized on the national level. English teacher Alex Dravis was also given credit by the awards for her instruction on Natalia’s piece.

Natalia will be in attendance at this year’s National Celebration, which begins in New York City on May 31, for a special ceremony at Carnegie Hall where she and other recipients will be recognized. The awards are the country’s longest-running and most prestigious recognition program for creative teenagers, with 2013 marking the 90th anniversary.  Alumni of the Scholastic Awards have gone on to continue their education at many of the top colleges and universities across the country.
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(L-R) Highlands Elementary Student Council members Claire Swonke, Max Danna and Kayla Moya.

(L-R) Highlands Elementary Student Council members Claire Swonke, Max Danna and Kayla Moya.

HIGHLANDS ELEMENTARY STUDENTS “LEND A PAW” FOR SHELTERED ANIMALS

The Highlands Elementary School Student Council conducted a “Lend a Paw” donation drive to help the city of Sugar Land Animal Services provide for the needs of animals in their care. Students collected food, beds, blankets, toys and other items for Animal Services.
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Nicholas Alexander (center) with (l-r) Mike McKie, FBISD interim superintendent; and Dee Koch, The George Foundation grant officer.

Nicholas Alexander (center) with (l-r) Mike McKie, FBISD interim superintendent; and Dee Koch, The George Foundation grant officer.

FBISD STUDENTS HONORED AT ANNUAL INVESTMENT IN YOUTH LUNCHEON

Twenty-one Fort Bend ISD high school juniors and seniors were awarded scholarships at the 16th annual Investment in Youth Luncheon, presented by The George Foundation, The Fort Bend Chamber of Commerce and Safari Texas Ranch. The students were among 58 FBISD students representing all 11 high schools, and those from 19 Fort Bend County campuses committed to six monthly sessions on philanthropy, including site visits and volunteer experiences at various area nonprofit organizations. The luncheon marked the conclusion of the Youth In Philanthropy program and provided a venue for YIP students to highlight their volunteer experiences to their peers, business representatives and the community at large.

With the support of foundations and the community, $23,500 in scholarships was awarded to FBISD students. Receiving The George Foundation’s top $5,000 scholarship was Elkins High School senior Nicholas Alexander, who was commended for his dedication to volunteering with youth mission groups.

Receiving $1,250 YIP scholarships were: Faithful Alabi, Bush High School; Tobi Babayemi, Hightower High School; Towo Babayemi,Hightower High School; Rashidat Edunjobi, Hightower High School; LeeAnn Ellankil, Kempner High School; Fernine Estioco, Ridge Point High School; Tierra Franklin, Marshall High School; Christopher Herzog, Clements High School; Kimberly Pham, Dulles High School; and Stephany Tsai, Austin High School.

Receiving $600 Fort Bend Chamber of Commerce scholarships were: Angelo Arambulo, Hightower High School; Brianna Cobos, Elkins High School; Ann Johnson, Elkins High School; Emily Johnson,  Hightower High School; Christine Nguyen,  Austin High School; David Nguyen,Bush High School; Leticia Pantigoso, Bush High School; Natasha Pirani, Marshall High School; Justin Tran, Clements High School; and William Yang, Austin High School.
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Trudy Rogers, Victoria Pride, Julia Shepstone, Bailey Northington and Gustaline Samba from Girl Scout Troop 28103.

Trudy Rogers, Victoria Pride, Julia Shepstone, Bailey Northington and Gustaline Samba from Girl Scout Troop 28103.

LOCAL TEENS EARNS GIRL SCOUT SILVER AWARD

Trudy Rogers, Victoria Pride, Julia Shepstone, Bailey Northington and Gustaline Samba from Girl Scout Troop 28103 – Rainbow Stars Service Unit successfully completed their Girl Scout Silver Award — the highest achievement a Girl Scout Cadette can receive. The silver take action project had three components, with the girls adopting the Sugar Land Animal Rescue Center. The project was called “Help a Puppy Pal.” Through this project, the Girl Scouts sponsored a Peanut Butter and Kong Toy Drive through Parkway United Methodist Church, made toys and blankets for the dogs and cats, replaced the old cat toys in cages, and designed, built and installed a set of agility steps for dog physical therapy and training at the center.
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(L-R) Bob Bighouse, Chemical Mortar Battalion;  Carlos Ballard, Marine Corps Aviation Ordinance specialist; Cadet Christopher Mann; Jim Duncan, Army captain tank commander; Cadet Edward Alexander; and Captain Richard L. Halferty, retired U.S. Navy.

(L-R) Bob Bighouse, Chemical Mortar Battalion; Carlos Ballard, Marine Corps Aviation Ordinance specialist; Cadet Christopher Mann; Jim Duncan, Army captain tank commander; Cadet Edward Alexander; and Captain Richard L. Halferty, retired U.S. Navy.

TWO JROTC CADETS FROM CLEMENTS HS HONORED

Two Clements Cadets recently received a special honor. The Texas Lone Star Chapter Of Korean War Veterans Inc.
presented the Sgt. Thomas J. Campion Memorial Scholarship Award to Cadet Lt. Cmdr. Christopher Mann, the Unit’s commanding officer, and the runner-up award to Lt. Edward Alexander, the Unit’s executive officer.

These cadets competed with local cadets for this prestigious award. In addition, they received a certificate and The Texas Lone Star Chapter of Korean War Veterans Challenge coin. The awards were presented during the William P. Clements NJROTC End of the Year Awards and Change of Command Program.  During this annual program, cadets are presented with various accolades for their hard work and dedication throughout the school year. The Awards Ceremony was followed by the official Change of Command.
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Emily-Sitton-phi-kappa-phi-

EMILY SITTON INDUCTED INTO PHI KAPPA PHI

Emily Sitton, a 2010 graduate of Kempner High School, was initiated into Phi Kappa Phi, the nation’s oldest and most selective collegiate honor society for all academic disciplines. Emily is pursuing a degree in drama/theater arts at Texas Tech University.

Sitton is among approximately 30,000 students, faculty, professional staff and alumni to be initiated into Phi Kappa Phi each year. Membership is by invitation and requires nomination and approval by a chapter. Only the top 10 percent of seniors and 7.5 percent of juniors, having at least 72 semester hours, are eligible for membership. Graduate students in the top 10 percent of the number of candidates for graduate degrees can also qualify, as do faculty, professional staff, and alumni who have achieved scholarly distinction.

Founded in 1897 at the University of Maine and headquartered in Baton Rouge, La., Phi Kappa Phi has chapters on more than 300 college and university campuses in North America and the Philippines.

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(L-R) Julian Libin and Ed Gifford, Troop 1631 advancement chair.

(L-R) Julian Libin and Ed Gifford, Troop 1631 advancement chair.

JULIAN LIBIN EARNS EAGLE RANK

Clements High School sophomore Julian Libin earned his Eagle Scout rank. He joined the Scouting program in first grade as a Tiger Cub with Pack 1882, and joined Troop 1631 in Sugar Land when he became a Boy Scout.

To achieve this rank, Julian earned 23 merit badges and served in many leadership positions, most recently as senior patrol leader.  For his Eagle project, he built a desk and hutch workstation for the Debate Teachers’ workroom at Clements. The project totaled 277.75 man-hours with the help of 14 volunteers.
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Members of the Clements High School NJROTC enjoy singing songs during a weekend camp out at Stephen F. Austin State Park.

Members of the Clements High School NJROTC enjoy singing songs during a weekend camp out at Stephen F. Austin State Park.

CLEMENTS CADETS COMPLETE ANNUAL ORIENTEERING TRIP

The Clements High School NJROTC Unit held its fifth annual Orienteering weekend. Ninety cadets participated in the event at Stephen F. Austin State Park in San Felipe. The weekend started with the cadets pitching 27 tents and a dining-fly. After dinner, the fire-watch was set and the remaining cadets zipped-up in sleeping-bags for a 38 degree night. Early Saturday morning, cadets were awakened by Cadet Domingo Alvarado-Castillo and his trumpet, as he played the traditional reveille. Following breakfast, the cadets set off on an orienteering course designed by Cadet Robert Bear. The teams of cadets, with compass and map in hand, had to locate 13 points. The course was timed.

Cadets Devlyn Russell and Dakota Homewood took first-place honors. Cadets Kiana Farokhpour, Katia Sanchez and Valerie Cazares came in second place, and the third-place team was comprised of Cadets Christopher Pierson, Samin Fardin and Jonathan Mansaram. After completion of the orienteering event, cadets participated in leadership and team-building exercises. In addition, Cadets Dakota Homewood and Ian Dunning performed a traditional United States Flag Retiring Ceremony. A talent show, which included skits, songs and jokes completed the evening.
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Art students from Sugar Land Middle School took top honors in The Castle Grand Prix - My Castle Party.

Art students from Sugar Land Middle School took top honors in The Castle Grand Prix – My Castle Party.

SUGAR LAND MS WINS ART COMPETITION

Art students from Sugar Land and James Bowie middle schools competed against one another in The Castle Grand Prix-My Castle Party on the Kids Directory stage at the Houston’s Children’s Festival. Each Art team had 13 minutes on stage to decorate a cardboard Castle they created weeks before. Sugar Land Middle School took home the trophy. Both castles are on display at the First Colony Mall near the Apple store.
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Lauren Yang with her artwork entitled Morning Melody.

Lauren Yang with her artwork entitled Morning Melody.

QUAIL VALLEY MS STUDENT COMPETES IN FEDERAL JUNIOR DUCK STAMP ART CONTEST

Lauren Yang, a sixth-grader at Quail Valley Middle School GT Academy, participated in the 2013 Federal Junior Duck Stamp Art Contest. Her artwork titled “Morning Melody” placed third of her age group. More than 400 students from Texas schools submitted their artwork.

The Junior Duck Stamp Conservation and Design Program is an arts and science curriculum designed to teach wetland habitat and waterfowl conservation to students in kindergarten through high school. Using scientific and wildlife observation principles, the program helps students visually communicate what they have learned by creating an entry for the state’s Junior Duck Stamp Art Contest.
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Ryan Bell with Henrik Norlander at the Shell Houston Open Pro-Am.

Ryan Bell with Henrik Norlander at the Shell Houston Open
Pro-Am.

TRAVIS HS SENIOR RECEIVES RANDY ARNAUD SCHOLARSHIP

Ryan Bell, a senior at Travis High School, has been selected from more than 170 applicants as the recipient of the Randy Arnaud Memorial Scholarship from the Houston Golf Association for 2013. This scholarship pays homage to Randy Arnaud, former media chairman and HGA board director, and is based on academic achievement and participation in the junior golf program.

Ryan also had an opportunity to play in the Pro-Am at the Shell Houston Open with PGA Professional Henrik Norlander with proceeds benefiting future scholarships. To date, HGA has granted more than $860,000 to deserving recipients. Ryan has also committed to the University of Texas Dallas to play golf and will be majoring in accounting as a member of the Davidson Management Honors Program.


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