Logan High is home to many bright students and a select few of these are chosen to represent Logan High at the Sterling Scholar competition during their senior year. A Sterling Scholar is a high school senior who is publicly recognized and awarded for the pursuit of excellence in scholarship, leadership and citizenship in the State of Utah. The process of being picked as a Sterling Scholar is time consuming and involves making a portfolio based on the subject area, submitting a resume, and, finally, being selected over all the other candidates by a group of teachers. The competition itself varies from category to category. The musical and dance categories actually have to perform in front of judges, while the science and mathematics candidates go through a second interviewing process and tell the judges about their research and portfolios.
Logan High had three of our seniors win at state level as Sterling Scholars: Emma Cardon and Victoria Stafford won overall in their categories and Raymond Li won second runner up in his category.
"I met a lot of people who I felt were amazing in their categories, absolute geniuses. It was so incredible to see what these other kids were doing."
Victoria Stafford won state level under the category of Speech, Theatre, and Forensics. Essentially, this category pertains to public speaking, theatre, and debate events. Stafford is president of debate team, and she specializes in keeping the team organized. She has also participated in the school play for the past two years. Stafford has even created a website for debate (thedebateguru.weebly.com).
She said, “I've been to the Stanford National Forensics Institute for two years, and I saw that a lot of people don’t have the resources to go to debate camps like this one, so I basically took my notes that I took at this camp and synthesized it into a website that is free and easily accessible. That way people are able to get these resources at no cost, and can learn how to debate and be a debater.” That is Stafford’s main and ongoing project.
As for the the Sterling Scholar competition in itself, Stafford shared her favorite things about it. “It definitely takes a lot of preparation, but overall it was really exciting! A lot of it was just showcasing what you’ve already done. It was a lot of work, but the experience itself was really incredible. I met a lot of people who I felt were amazing in their categories, absolute geniuses. It was so incredible to see what these other kids were doing, and really I’m just truly blessed to be considered even on par with so many of these people.”
Stafford said the hardest part of it all was the intense preparation and being able to manage time wisely.
Emma Cardon, a Logan High senior, also took state as a Sterling Scholar in instrumental music. Stafford said of Cardon, “I’ve been doing piano with her since we were about 4 years old, and she is so dedicated to music. It’s incredible. She’s written a number of orchestral pieces that have actually been performed by the Utah Symphony. She’s incredible. She does a lot of community work and plays for charity. Overall, she’s a great person, and she deserved that award.”
The Sterling Scholars mentioned, and all of the scholars from Logan High who participated in the event, are truly incredible at what they do. Logan High is proud of them, and they have bright futures ahead. The Sterling Scholar program is an opportunity all upcoming seniors should definitely consider. If you have something that you are passionate about, take it to the next level and become recognized for it; you definitely won’t have regrets!