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Four Ohio students have been named U.S. Presidential Scholars

They are: Alyssa M. Bryan, of Chagrin Falls, who attends Hathaway Brown School inShaker Heights and her mostinfluential teacher isWilliam Adler; Kevin Hwang, of Athens, who attends Athens High School inThe Plains;Drake S. Thomas, of Dublin, who attends Dublin Coffman High School; andSean M. Howe, of Sylvania, who attends Toledo School for the Arts.

U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan today announced the 49th class of U.S. Presidential Scholars, recognizing 141 high school seniors for their accomplishments in academics or the arts.

See the complete list

"Presidential Scholars demonstrate the accomplishments that can be made when students challenge themselves, set the highest standards, and commit themselves to excellence," Duncan said.

The White House Commission on Presidential Scholars, appointed by President Obama, selects honored scholars annually based on their academic success, artistic excellence, essays, school evaluations and transcripts, as well as evidence of community service, leadership, and demonstrated commitment to high ideals.

Of the three million students expected to graduate from high school this year, more than 3,300 candidates qualified for the 2013 awards determined by outstanding performance on the College Board SAT and ACT exams, and through nominations made by Chief State School Officers or the National YoungArts Foundation's nationwide YoungArt competition.

The 2013 U.S. Presidential Scholars are comprised of one young man and one young woman from each state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, and from U.S. families living abroad, as well as 15 chosen at-large and 20 U.S. Presidential Scholars in the Arts.

Created in 1964, the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program has honored more than 6,000 of the nation's top-performing students with the prestigious award given to honorees during the annual ceremony in D.C.

The program was expanded in 1979 to recognize students who demonstrate exceptional talent in the visual, literary and performing arts The 2013 ceremony will be held June 16, when each honoree will receive a Presidential Scholar Medallion.

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