■ A district-record 48 seniors in Fayette County Public Schools are semifinalists in the annual National Merit Scholarship Program and will compete for about $36 million in college scholarships awarded in 2011.
Fayette schools account for just 5.6 percent of the student population in Kentucky, but the district has 22 percent of the state's semifinalists.
The 16,000 semifinalists represent less than 1 percent of students nationwide — those who scored highest on the 2009 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. About 90 percent are expected to advance, and roughly half will win scholarships.
Three types of awards will be offered in the spring: 2,500 National Merit $2,500 scholarships given on a state representational basis, about 1,000 corporate-sponsored scholarships and nearly 5,000 college-sponsored awards. Winners will be announced in several waves from April to July.
The FCPS semifinalists are: Henry Clay High School: John Aroutiounian, Devin Booker, Jeremy Bradford, Connor Callaway, Amanda Dixon, Elizabeth Hansen, Faina Matveeva, Madeline Mooney, Gregory Myers, Matthew Powell, Neha Ray, Elizabeth St. Clair, Jesse Staben, Christopher Thompson and James Wang.
Lafayette High School: Andrea Frost, John Gonzalez, Emma Jackson, Fiona Mowbray, Eleanor Todd and Adam Williams.
Paul Laurence Dunbar High School: Michael Bowie, Timothy Cui, Andrew Derenge, Joseph Ferguson, Jingyuan Fu, Dillon Hickman, Sonya Hildebrand, Sandy Huang, Andrew Johnson, Arunita Kar, Kevin Kral, Nashwin Laungani, Jay Li, Emily Lin, Victor Macrinici, Patrick Michael, Roshan Palli, Paul Parell, Kelsey Randhawa, Lawrence Rogers, Rebekah Ruth, Wilson Shirley, Gareth Voss, Enoch Yeh and Rory Young.
Tates Creek High School: Michael Druggan and Shelby Fulton.
■ The University of Kentucky welcomed its 25th class of Otis A. Singletary Scholars this fall.
The Singletary Scholarship is the most prestigious four-year scholarship awarded by UK. Named for former UK President Otis A. Singletary, it began in 1985 and covers the full cost of tuition, room and board, and a personal stipend for four years of undergraduate study. The scholarship is valued at $60,000.
The fall 2010 Singletary Scholars were selected from 637 candidates and include three National Merit finalists, 15 valedictorians and 20 Kentucky Governor's Scholars.
The 2010 recipients are: Parker Lee Ball, West Jessamine High School, Nicholasville; Elizabeth Nicole Bauer, Centralia (Ill.) High School; Matthew Michael Bendure, Madison Central High School, Richmond; Johanna Ariel Blythe Reske, Ryle High School, Union; Katelyn Lou Ann Brown, Madisonville North Hopkins High School; Kristen Leigh Burke, Pike County Central High School, Pikeville; Thomas Joseph Crush, Trinity High School, Louisville; Desirae Theresa Duncan, John Hardin High School, Elizabethtown; Stephanie Diane Lee Gibson, Henderson City High School; Alexander Etienne Hare, Rowan County Senior High School, Morehead; Sarah Lee Hayden, Father Ryan High School, Williamson, Tenn.; Byron Richard Hempel, Danville High School; Allyson L. Hughes, Owensboro Senior High School; Drake Stuart Jackson, Christian Fellowship School, Benton; Shelby Patrick Jones, Fulton City High School; William Thomas Kennedy, St. Xavier High School, Louisville; Anne Marie Kirk, Henry Clay High School, Lexington; Jessime Murray Kirk, Fleming County High School, Flemingsburg; Aaron Joel Labrado, Dawson Springs High School; Kendall Annette Mallory, Scott County High School, Georgetown; Sean Catherine Meloney, Daviess County High School, Owensboro; Hayley Ann Myers, Scott High School, Taylor Mill; Benjamin Daniel Norton, Oldham County High School, Buckner; Andrew Ritzel, Bellbrook (Ohio) High School; Bryan A. Robbins, Bell County High School, Pineville; Mariah Caitlyn Rowland, Franklin-Simpson High School, Franklin; James Adam Schilt, Barbourville High School; Breanna Michelle Shelton, Russellville High School; Jeremy Paul Swiney, Magoffin County High School, Salyersville; Patrick Davis VanMeter, Green County High School, Greensburg; and Kari Anne Williamson, Knox Central High School, Barbourville.
■ Thirty-three students at Sayre School have earned AP Scholar Awards in recognition of their exceptional achievement on Advanced Placement exams.
Nine students qualified for the AP Scholar with Distinction Award by earning an average grade of at least 3.5 on all AP exams taken and grades of 3 or higher on five or more exams. They are: Gabriel Ambruso, son of Monica and Paul Ambruso; Emily Colclough, daughter of Elizabeth and George Colclough; Tyler Gamble, son of Linda and John Gamble; Elianna Greissworth, daughter of Randolph Hollingsworth and Richard Greissman; Nick Klus, son of Dawn and John Klus; Fiona Rodgerson, daughter of Brooke Alexander and George Rodgerson; Kelsey Ryan, daughter of John Ryan; Claire Simon, daughter of Kathryn Simon; and Adam Suhl, son of Sylvia Cerel-Suhl and Jeremiah Suhl.
Nine students qualified for the AP Scholar with Honor Award by earning an average grade of at least 3.25 on all AP exams taken and grades of 3 or higher on four or more of these exams. They are: Jonathan Burkhart, son of Elesha Burkhart; Pearson Croney-Clark, daughter of Elizabeth Croney and James Clark; Caroline Jacobs, daughter of Elizabeth and Andrew Jacobs; Libby Li, daughter of Zhicheng Tang and Liyong Li; Mason Niquette, son of Garland and Charles Niquette; Mack Pauly, son of Julie Pauly; Evan Ruschell, son of Pamela and Ralph Ruschell; Josh Solomon, son of Terri and Walter Solomon; and Maggie Wilson, daughter of Bookie and Judge Wilson.
Fifteen students qualified for the AP Scholar Award by completing three or more AP exams with grades of 3 or higher. They are: Annie Ahmed, daughter of Rubina and Muhammad Ahmed; D.R. Ball, son of Linda and Ray Ball; Conrad Bandoroff, son of Holly and Craig Bandoroff; Madison Courtney, daughter of Kim and Michael Courtney; Charlotte Cruze, daughter of Elizabeth Romaine; Hayley Cunningham, daughter of Katherine Dixon and Mark Cunningham; Rick Gammill, son of Cynthia Gammill and Bradley Gammill; Taylor Johnson, son of Vicki Johnson; Mandy Kaiser, daughter of Jill Kaiser; Joe Kershaw, son of Valerie Kershaw and Allen Kershaw; Henry Martin, son of Lolly and Bill Martin; Ward Roberts, son of Jennifer Roberts and Steven Roberts; Peter Simon, son of Ellen and Michael Simon; Ben Tudor, son of Deborah Tudor and Ted Tudor; and Michael Waltman, son of Wendy and Jonathan Waltman.
Of this year's award recipients, 13 students — Annie Ahmed, Gabriel Ambruso, Conrad Bandoroff, Madison Courtney, Pearson Croney-Clark, Charlotte Cruze, Hayley Cunningham, Rick Gammill, Caroline Jacobs, Claire Simon, Peter Simon, Adam Suhl and Michael Waltman — have one more year in which to complete college-level work and possibly earn a higher-level AP Scholar Award.
■ Tates Creek Middle School in Lexington recently was granted official status as an International Baccalaureate school.
First established to ensure that children of diplomats had access to a unified and challenging curriculum no matter where they lived, the International Baccalaureate Programme has grown into a network of 3,050 schools in 139 countries. Gaining IB status is a difficult process, requiring a redesign of course offerings, extensive professional development and the adoption of instructional practices that tie learning to real-world problem solving and international understanding.
Only 380 schools in the United States offer the Middle Years Programme. Tates Creek is the first in Kentucky. The IB Programme includes components for elementary, middle and high school students. (Tates Creek High School is one of five high school programs in the state with this offering.)
Developed for students ages 11 to 16, the middle years offering provides academic challenges that encourage students to become critical and reflective thinkers.
■ Britt Brockman, an ophthalmologist in Louisville, has been named chairman of the University of Kentucky Board of Trustees. Louisville businessman James Stuckert has been elected vice chairman, and Pikeville attorney Pamela May will continue as the secretary.
Brockman, who earned a bachelor's degree in pharmacy from UK and a medical degree from the University of Louisville, is managing partner of John-Kenyon American Eye Institute and a partner in Novamed Ambulatory Surgery Center in Louisville.
Stuckert, past chairman and CEO of J.J.B. Hilliard, W.L. Lyons Inc., is a member of the UK Hall of Distinguished Alumni, the Gatton College of Business and Economics Hall of Fame and the College of Engineering Hall of Fame. He also has been president of the UK Alumni Association and chairman of the UK Development Council and UK's billion-dollar capital campaign.
May, who owns her own law firm, is a graduate of UK's College of Law and has been a UK trustee since 2001. She has been secretary of the board for the last few years.
The UK Board of Trustees recently approved the appointment of George Ward as executive director of the university's Coldstream Research Campus.
Ward, who has been a state Commerce Cabinet secretary, has 30 years of executive experience in hotel and real estate development, finance and business operations, and government relations.
■ The UK College of Medicine announced the appointment of Dr. Charles "Chipper" Griffith, professor of medicine and pediatrics and former residency director for internal medicine, to the role of associate dean for student affairs. Griffith shares the responsibilities of the position with Dr. Todd Cheever, who returned as assistant dean of student affairs, having previously held the role for seven years before leaving to pursue international aid work.
■ Dr. Wendy F. Hansen has been named chairman of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the UK College of Medicine. Hansen also is the director of the Division of Maternal Fetal Medicine.
Hansen attended Northwestern University School of Medicine and completed her residency and fellowship training at the University of North Carolina Hospital at Chapel Hill. She came to UK in 2004 from the University of Iowa.
■ A new high-performance supercomputer that will help power the University of Kentucky's research mission has put the school in the top 10 public universities for computing power. The William N. Lipscomb Jr. High-Performance Supercomputing Cluster (Lipscomb Cluster), named for UK alumnus and Nobel laureate William N. Lipscomb Jr., is three times more powerful than UK's old machine.
The Lipscomb Cluster is based on the new Dell PowerEdge C6100 high-performance computing, or HPC, server chassis. Installation of the cluster began in July. After weeks of work by Dell, the UK HPC team and the UK Center for Computational Sciences, the supercomputer cluster went live on Aug. 25.
■ Preliminary enrollment figures at the University of Kentucky show that this fall's freshman class is the most academically prepared in the institution's history, even as record numbers of students apply and enroll at UK.
Overall, undergraduate, graduate and professional enrollment at UK totals 27,951 this year, a record high, up 2.9 percent from last year. Preliminary data suggest that UK's retention rate also has hit an all-time high of 81.8 percent. The previous record was 81 percent in 2007.
This year's freshman class totals 4,326, up from 4,153 last year, with a record 25.2 ACT composite average, up from 24.7 last year. The average high school GPA also is at an all-time high at 3.60, up from 3.52 last year, and the number of freshmen with an ACT score higher than 26 is a record 1,886.
UK also set a record for applications with 13,537, up 11 percent from 2009.