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National Merit scholars (front row): Aslan Cook, Cassidy Kaniho, Evan Gates, Connor Kalāhiki, Sage Maxwell, Phillip Amona and Lily Evans. The scholars’ most influential educators (back row): Gail Ishimoto, Kahu Sherman Thompson, Jay Kauka, Sarah Razee, Diana Fontaine and Alika Chee.

KS National Merit scholars honor their most influential teachers

Nov. 16, 2018

Contributed by Nadine Lagaso

Seven Kamehameha Schools Kapālama students were recently recognized by the prestigious National Merit Scholarship Program.

Seniors Phillip Amona and Aslan Cook were selected National Merit Scholarship semifinalists and seniors Lily Evans, Evan Gates, Connor Kalahiki, Cassidy Kaniho and Sage Maxwell were among the scholarship program’s commended students recognized for their exceptional academic promise.

KS Kapālama held its traditional banquet at Hale Pelekikena for students, their families and administrators. Students invited their most influential educators to the event to honor the important roles they played putting them on the path to scholastic success.

Hats off to the following influential educators selected by the scholars:

Science Kumu Gail Ishimoto – Selected by Aslan Cook
Kahu Sherman Thompson – Selected by Evan Gates
Interim Vice Principal / Social Studies Kumu Jay Kauka – Selected by Cassidy Kaniho
Social Studies Kumu Sarah Razee – Selected by Connor Kalāhiki and Phillip Amona)
English Kumu Diana Fontaine – Selected by Sage Maxwell
Physical Education Kumu Alika Chee – Selected by Lily Evans

The coveted scholarships – awarded by the non-profit National Merit Scholarship Corporation – are viewed as definitive marks of academic excellence, and have contributed significantly to the nation’s talent pool of future leaders. More than 16,000 National Merit Scholarship semifinalists will compete for 7,500 scholarships worth $31 million next spring.

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