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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Thursday, April 20, 2006

Three from Hawai'i on Merit list

Advertiser Staff

Three Hawai'i students were named Merit Scholarship winners in the first round of announcements yesterday from the National Merit Schol-arship Corp.

Matthew Tanaka and Nolan Chung of Iolani School and Morgen Sullivan of Mid-Pacific Institute are among an estimated 1,000 outstanding high school seniors receiving corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards financed by some 300 companies, foundations and other business organizations.

Tanaka received the Computer Sciences Corp. Merit Scholarship, Chung the First Hawaiian Merit Scholarship and Sullivan the Novartis Merit Scholarship.

Most corporate-sponsored scholarships are renewable for up to four years of college undergraduate study and range from $500 to $10,000 per year. Others provide a single payment between $2,500 and $5,000.

On May 3, the National Merit Scholarship Corp. will name recipients of $2,500 National Merit Scholarships, and on May 24 and July 10, NMSC will announce winners of college-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards. By the conclusion of this year's competition, some 8,200 academic champions will have won Merit Scholarship awards worth $33 million.

EDUCATION DEAN LEAVING UH

Randy Hitz, dean of the University of Hawai'i-Manoa College of Education for the past eight years, has accepted an appointment as the dean of the Graduate School of Education at Portland State University in Oregon. He is tentatively scheduled to leave Manoa in July.

Hitz said he took the position to be closer to both his children, who recently moved to Seattle and started a business.

Under Hitz's leadership, the College of Education at UH received national professional accreditation for the first time, Manoa interim chancellor Denise Konan said in a news release yesterday.

'AIEA STUDENT BEATING ODDS

Elijah Sanchez of 'Aiea High School is a recipient of the 2006 Horatio Alger National Scholarship worth $10,000.

The Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans provides scholarships to high school seniors facing adversity including poverty, foster care, parental substance abuse and physical abuse. They also provide mentoring to help students accomplish their goals.

More than 20,000 high school seniors applied for this year's scholarship, and based on their essays describing how they have overcome their own personal adversity, 107 students were chosen to receive the financial aid award.

In addition to the scholarship, Sanchez will receive an all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C., for the 2006 Horatio Alger National Scholars Conference. Sanchez also will receive financial aid and counseling to help him meet his educational goals.

KAHUKU GOING FOR CIVICS TITLE

Kahuku High School students will represent Hawai'i in the national "We the People, the Citizen and the Constitution" competition in Washington, D.C., April 28 to May 2.

They won the state competition last month.

The We the People program, sponsored by the Center for Civic Education and funded by the U.S. Department of Education, promotes civic competence and responsibility among elementary and high school students. More than 1,200 high school students and their teachers participate annually in the national competition.