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Video: Three Starkville High School Students Named Presidential Scholars

STARKVILLE,Miss.(WCBI)- For 50 years, the Presidential Scholars Program has honored graduating high school students across America with scholarships, trips to Washington DC, and wonderful networking opportunities.

Starkville High has more than its fair share of Presidential Scholars this year.

Every year, as many as 141 teenagers are named Presidential Scholars. It’s one of the highest honors a high school student can achieve.

Three bright students from Starkville High School were chosen from more than 1,000 applicants for the Mississippi State University Presidential Scholarship.

“My mom and dad were telling everyone that I was a finalist for it and being interviewed so I was like if I don’t get this then everyone’s going to know and it will be very embarrassing and so I was really happy that I got it and I was just so honored,” says Emily Damm.

Emily Damm, remembers many nights where she stayed home studying for tests instead of going out with her friends. She says no matter what, hard work always pays off.

“I’ve out in so much time studying and just being involved in so many clubs that this is just icing on the cake,” says Damm.

After undergoing the difficult selection process, Jack Bryan remembers just how excited he was when he got the call.

“I was thrilled when I heard I was even considered a finalist. When I got the call I was jumping up and down on the phone while trying to keep a level voice so he couldn’t hear me jumping around and freaking out, but I was very excited and not expecting it at all,” says Jack Bryan.

Even high achievers, like Jack, can come down with a case of Senioritis. He offers this advice for the class of 2014.

“Make a difficult schedule your senior year and even if a college is difficult to get into apply to it anyway and apply for scholarships. There is no harm in applying. You never know what your going to get,” says Bryan.

Senior Holly Travis, hopes to one day become a Capitol Defense Attorney. She says the Presidential Scholarship is about much more than just tuition.

“I think the presidential scholarship is not only great as a financial scholarship, but it also opens so many door and gets you so many connections and opportunities,” says Holly Travis.

So, how do you go about landing a Presidential Scholarship?

“Be involved in stuff that you are passionate about not just stuff to fill up your resume, but be involved in stuff that you can talk about in an interview, be involved in stuff that actually means something to you and I think that’s so important that so many people forget about when they try to do community service,” says Travis.

The students are automatically enrolled in the honors college at Mississippi State University through this scholarship.