Favorite

The 1998 Arkansas Times Academic All-Star Team 

Go to the head of the class.

Here they are again, 20 good reasons to feel good about Arkansas high schools and the students they produce.

The Arkansas Times is proud to present its fourth Academic All-Star Team.

There's not a grade-slacker in the bunch, but the honorees are chosen for more than their homework skills. They are great musicians, great athletes, committed community volunteers, budding scientists, stellar role models, funny and the apples of many parents' eyes.

Nomination forms are sent annually to every high school in the state, public and private. We also seek nominations of home-schooled students. Only seniors are eligible.

School counselors and principals are allowed to nominate two seniors--one boy and one girl — from each high school, regardless of size. They supply grades, test scores and accounts of significant achievements. We also ask the nominees to write a brief essay on their accomplishments.

The nominations are reviewed by two independent panels of professional educators and others interested in education. From a group of 50 finalists, the top 20--10 boys and 10 girls--are chosen.

Following are capsule biographies of the winners. We've also given a bit of extra attention to the other finalists, along with a complete list of all nominees. The All-Star Team will be honored at a reception this week at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. They'll receive plaques and cash awards, bringing the amount rewarded since the program began to more than $20,000.

Read on and be inspired.

In the rain forest

MICHAEL LEE BERUMEN
Age: 18
Hometown: Fort Smith
High School: Southside
Parents: Dr. and Mrs. Mike Berumen
College plans: University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, pre-med.

The summer after his sophomore year, Michael Berumen went to Costa Rica with a group of students to do tropical ecology research in the rain forests, as part of the Duke University Talent Identification Program. "This experience had a profound impact on my life," Michael says. "We were able to work hands-on with several scientists undertaking their own research projects. Extreme specialization in a field exposes one to new ideas and problems never before addressed.

"Much of our time was spent adventuring in the forests, comparing various habitat zones, and listening to lectures or presentations. We visited banana plantations, and saw firsthand the destructive efforts of mismanaging the forests. We also visited places where environmental groups worked with the natives to harvest and cultivate the forests in ways that will keep them viable for many generations. Living in the same conditions as the natives (i.e., without hot or running water, electricity, etc.) really made me aware of how much we take for granted. Someday I hope to return to the Costa Rican rain forests, the place that cinched my desire to pursue scientific interests."

At Southside, Michael was president of the National Honor Society and organizer of many service projects through the society, vice president of the Senior Council, secretary of the Physics Club, and a member of the varsity quiz bowl and varsity soccer teams. He ranked fourth in a class of 483 and could have competed for the top spot, his counselor says, except that he chose to take some courses at Westark College that were not available at Southside.

Michael participated in numerous volunteer activities with the Fort Smith Area Catholic Youth Ministries, the Humane Society, Habitat for Humanity, and the Boys Club, where he served as a soccer coach for two seasons. He has won major academic awards in mathematics, algebra and Spanish, among others. His counselor, Sherma R. Granger, says "Michael gives total effort to everything he does."

Full-immersion American

SWETANGI BHALEEYA

Favorite

Speaking of Arkansas Times Academic All-Stars

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Readers also liked…

Most Shared

  • World leaders set to meet in Little Rock on resource access and sustainable development

    Next week a series of meetings on the use of technology to tackle global problems will be held in Little Rock by Club de Madrid — a coalition of more than 100 former democratic former presidents and prime ministers from around the world — and the P80 Group, a coalition of large public pension and sovereign wealth funds founded by Prince Charles to combat climate change. The conference will discuss deploying existing technologies to increase access to food, water, energy, clean environment, and medical care.
  • Rapert compares Bill Clinton to Orval Faubus

    Sen. Jason Rapert (R-Conway)  was on "Capitol View" on KARK, Channel 4, this morning, and among other things that will likely inspire you to yell at your computer screen, he said he expects someone in the legislature to file a bill to do ... something about changing the name of the Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport.
  • Fake news

    So fed up was young Edgar Welch of Salisbury, N.C., that Hillary Clinton was getting away with running a child-sex ring that he grabbed a couple of guns last Sunday, drove 360 miles to the Comet Ping Pong pizzeria in Washington, D.C., where Clinton was supposed to be holding the kids as sex slaves, and fired his AR-15 into the floor to clear the joint of pizza cravers and conduct his own investigation of the pedophilia syndicate of the former first lady, U.S. senator and secretary of state.
  • Reality TV prez

    There is almost nothing real about "reality TV." All but the dullest viewers understand that the dramatic twists and turns on shows like "The Bachelor" or "Celebrity Apprentice" are scripted in advance. More or less like professional wrestling, Donald Trump's previous claim to fame.

Latest in Cover Stories

Visit Arkansas

View Trumpeter Swans in Heber Springs

View Trumpeter Swans in Heber Springs

Magness Lake, in Heber Springs, is a magnet for swans

Event Calendar

« »

December

S M T W T F S
  1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30 31

Most Viewed

  • Arkansas archeologist does his job, is asked to leave

    Amid Department of Arkansas Heritage project.
  • 2017 legislature spreads its wings

    Also, Asa on Trump, schmoozing schedule and more.
  • Tomb to table: A Christmas feast offered by the residents of Mount Holly and other folk.

    A Christmas feast offered by the residents and future residents of Mount Holly and recipes from the Times staff.
  • Dems path forward

    The Arkansas Dems can lead by doing the opposite of what the national Dems did when they reelected the same leadership in charge since the equally embarrassing losses as seen in Arkansas. Electing 75-plus-year-olds is no way to embrace the youth.
  • The sweet hereafter

    This week, the Arkansas Times falls back on that oldest of old chestnuts: a recipe issue. Being who we are, of course, we had to put a twist on that; namely, the fact that most of the recipes you'll find in these pages are courtesy of people who have shuffled off to that great kitchen in the sky, where the Good Lord is always whipping up new things in his toque and apron, running the great mixers of genetics and time, maybe presenting the batter-dipped beaters and bowls to Jesus for a lick down.

Most Recent Comments

 

© 2016 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation