Episcopal grad wins prestigious scholarship _lowres

Mary Elizabeth Barksdale

Mary Elizabeth Barksdale, a graduating senior at Episcopal School of Baton Rouge, is one of more than 4,000 candidates in the 2016 U.S. Presidential Scholars Program.

She is the daughter of Drs. Phillip and Sharon Lee Barksdale.

Scholars are selected on the basis of superior academic and artistic achievements, leadership qualities, strong character and involvement in community and school activities, a news release said.

Annually, up to 161 U.S. Presidential Scholars are chosen from among that year’s senior class. A panel of educators will review submissions and select 800 semifinalists in early April. Finalists will be chosen by the Commission on Presidential Scholars, a group appointed by President Barack Obama, and the U.S. Department of Education will announce the scholars in May.

All are invited to Washington, D.C., in June for the National Recognition Program, featuring various events, enrichment activities and the presentation of the Presidential Scholars Medallion during a White House-sponsored ceremony, the release said.