■ Five Sayre School juniors have been awarded DELF (Diplôme d'études en langue française) diplomas after taking the DELF test, the official French government language-proficiency test. The examination is used in place of entrance tests at French universities and is considered standardized proof of an individual's level of French language ability in France and many other countries, including those in the European Union. Sayre students took the DELF B1 exam, which identifies language learners as independent users, capable of maintaining interactions, understanding and maintaining discussions, giving opinions and capable of dealing with situations likely to arise in daily life. The Sayre contingent was recognized as the first group of high school students in the southeastern region to take the DELF test.
■ Cassidy topped the elementary schools and Edythe J. Hayes repeated as middle school champion in the 2012 Battle of the Books reading incentive program. Athens-Chilesburg was second in the April 19 elementary showdown at "It's About Kids" Support Services, followed by Maxwell and Veterans Park. In the March 8 middle school finals, Tates Creek was runner-up, Bryan Station placed third and Southern was fourth.
In this series of competitions within Fayette County Public Schools, students are encouraged to read with particular attention to the details. The structure and format of the contests can vary. Then, each spring, the coaches select the next year's titles while aiming to cover various interests and reading levels.
■ Alice Li, a freshman at Paul Laurence Dunbar High, will compete in the Future Problem Solving international contest June 7 to 10 at Indiana University after a first-place finish in state competition this semester.
Individual Future Problem Solving is held in conjunction with the Governor's Cup finals; students may participate on their school's FPS team and in the individual contest. This year, 197 students registered among the three divisions: junior (grades 4-6), middle (7-9) and high school (10-12).
Alice won top honors in the middle grades group; Joanna Slusarewicz of Winburn came in ninth. In the high school division, Rachel Dixon of Tates Creek placed third, and Tates Creek's Lindsey Bell was seventh. In the junior contest, Madi Halwes of Beaumont finished eighth, followed by Jin Cho of Winburn.
Future Problem Solving is an internationally recognized, award- winning program that encourages critical thinking and fosters investigation, ingenuity, creativity and cooperative learning. The Kentucky Association for Academic Competition coordinates FPS in the state.
■ The U.S. Department of Education has selected Rosa Parks Elementary and Georgetown Middle School as 2012 Green Ribbon Schools. Nationwide, 78 recipients were announced.
Green Ribbon Schools, a new federal recognition program that was launched in September, cites those that use a comprehensive approach to creating "green" environments through reducing environmental impact, promoting health, and ensuring a high-quality environmental and outdoor education. Such efforts provide students the skills and sustainability concepts needed in the 21st-century global economy.
Award nominations came from state education agencies, the District of Columbia and the Bureau of Indian Education. More than 350 schools completed applications.
Kentucky's other honoree was Richardsville Elementary in Warren County.
■ The University of Kentucky School of Journalism and Telecommunications finished 10th in the annual William Randolph Hearst Foundation's Journalism Awards Program Intercollegiate Writing Competition for 2011-12.
UK's win was due to the work of journalism majors writing in the Kentucky Kernel, the independent student newspaper at UK.
The Hearst program consists of five monthly writing competitions, two photojournalism competitions, three broadcast news competitions and four multimedia competitions, with championship finals in all divisions.
Taylor Moak, the Kernel's editor-in-chief, will compete in the writing championship in June in San Francisco. Moak qualified for the championship with a top-five performance in spot news and top-20 performances in two other competitions. Becca Clemons, recently named the Kernel's editor- in-chief for the 2012-13 school year, took second place in the spot news competition.
The top 10 programs in the Intercollegiate Writing Competition, in order, were: Penn State, Indiana, Northwestern, Missouri, Arizona State, Kansas, Oregon, Nebraska-Lincoln, Florida and Kentucky.
■ Eighteen students have been named recipients of the Lexington Clinic Foundation Fergus Hanson Memorial Scholarship. Their names, fields of study and hometowns are:
Megan Adkins, pharmacy, Ashland; Maranda Brooks, nursing, Lexington; Dawn Bryant, physical therapy, McKee; Ludmila Chubaruk, nursing, Lexington; James Corder, family nurse practitioner, Stearns; Autumn Edwards, physical therapy, Somerset; Alyssa Estes, nursing, Beattyville; Brooke Harper, physical therapy, West Liberty; Olivia Hopper, nursing, East Point; Lauren Howe, physical therapy, Lexington; Hannah Jefferson, physical therapy, Hazard; Betty Kristina Kirk, physical therapy, Versailles; Hannah Pollitt, nursing, Hillsboro; Samantha Royse, nursing, Hillsboro; Matthew Savage, physical therapy, Albany; Rebecca Smith, occupational therapy, Richmond; William "Chad" Witzel, athletic training, Winchester; Marilyn Wong, pharmacy, Versailles.
The scholarship program is named for Fergus Hanson, Lexington Clinic's second and longest-serving administrator, instrumental in the development of Lexington Clinic. Annually, Lexington Clinic Foundation awards these scholarships to assist and encourage students living in Central and Eastern Kentucky to pursue careers in the allied health sciences. This year the foundation received 128 applications. Eighteen students received awards ranging from $500 to $2,500.
■ Diana Porter, an associate professor in the department of curriculum and instruction at Eastern Kentucky University, has been selected as a team leader for the Children's Choice Project for 2012-14 based on her commitment to children's literature and her professional involvement with schools across Kentucky.
The International Reading Association and the Children's Book Council have co-sponsored the Children's Choice Project since 1974. Each year, more than 12,000 schoolchildren in grades K-6 evaluate and write reviews of their favorite titles among books donated by U.S. children's book publishers.
Porter will collaborate with several schools in the Central Kentucky area that will receive copies of new books for children to read. At the end of the project, the schools keep the books.
■ Kentucky American Water has awarded Ripple Effect Scholarships to three Kentucky high school seniors for their academic achievements and demonstrated commitment to the environment. This marks the 10th year the company has offered the scholarship program. The 2012 recipients are Madison Gilinsky and Seham Aldabbagh of Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in Lexington and Haley Flannery of George Rogers Clark High School in Winchester. Each student receives a $500 award from the company for use at a higher education institution.
This year's Ripple Effect Scholarship recipients have demonstrated a commitment to environmental stewardship through activities such as coordinating recycling programs at their respective schools and participating in other community environmental efforts.
■ An Eastern Kentucky University senior is on her way to turning her business concept into a business venture after winning a $1,000 cash award and an offer of donated office space.
Betitala Sinda Mbala, an international business major, has been named the winner of the 2012 Excellence in Entrepreneurship Awards Collegiate Business Concept Challenge. Mbala said she plans to use the $1,000 from the competition along with other offers of assistance to start Nesiyah, an online business and social network.
Nesiyah, inspired from the Hebrew word, nesi'ah, which means journey or travel, is based on the concept of ride sharing, where people carpool in common vehicles to and from popular destinations.
Mbala's winning concept immediately drew the attention of EKU's Center for Economic Development, Entrepreneurship and Technology and its director, Ian Mooers.
"The Business Accelerator at EKU is providing office space and a $1,000 match of Beti's EIEA award so she can start her business now," Mooers said. "We want to do as much as we can to support our student entrepreneurs, and help them achieve their dreams."
Mbala and her faculty sponsor, Weiling Zhuang, who also received a $250 cash award from the competition, will be recognized in September at the 2012 EIEA awards luncheon at The Center for Rural Development in Somerset.
For information about the Excellence in Entrepreneurship Collegiate Business Concept Challenge, go to Eiea.eku.edu.
■ Lexmark International has honored two recipients of INSPIRE: Lexmark's Teaching Award. The program recognizes outstanding Central Kentucky area middle and high school science, technology, engineering and math teachers.
Lexmark representatives surprised these teachers with INSPIRE awards, presented in front of peers and students at their schools: Jessica Roberts, a science teacher at Beaumont Middle School, and Mike Tetirick, a science teacher at Boyle County Middle School in Danville.
Roberts applies technology in her classroom for research, stations and online lab investigations to encourage a love of science and future math, science and technology careers. She researches the latest information to increase her professional knowledge to better serve her students.
Tetirick converted his science classroom into a high-tech lab to foster real-world learning. He uses state-of-the-art technology including software that enables his students to collect real data. Tetirick spent hours setting up the lab and redoing his lesson plans to integrate this new software into his classroom.
Lexmark presented each teacher with a $1,000 award.
■ The Bluegrass Indo-American Society offers five merit-based awards and eight needs-based awards of $1,000 each to graduating Kentucky high school students. The application deadline is May 8. To download the application form and instructions, go to Scholarship.biacs.org. For information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Since 1988, the Bluegrass Indo-American Society has awarded more than $140,000 in scholarships to students in Kentucky.