Schools and PTA garner recognitions
The Pasco County School Board recognized the Pasco County Council PTA and three schools at its September board meeting. Seven Oaks Elementary, River Ridge Middle and Wiregrass Ranch High schools were named National PTA Schools of Excellence. The Pasco County PTA was honored with the Florida PTA Safety Award, President’s Award for Membership, and Gold membership increase. From left: Heather Buboltz, Seven Oaks PTA past president; Kurt Browning, superintendent of schools; Megan McNeil, Wiregrass Ranch PTSA past president; Robyn White, Wiregrass Ranch principal; Shauntte Butcher, Seven Oaks principal; Denise Nicholas, PCC PTA president; Kevin Kolean, River Ridge assistant principal; Jennifer Resto, River Ridge School of Excellence chairman; and Alison Crumbley, school board chairwoman.
Criminal justice panel
Saint Leo University at 33701 State Road 52, in St. Leo will host a criminal justice panel discussion on Oct. 7. The panel will include Saint Leo’s criminal justice and psychology faculty members as well as Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco. A reception will be held from 4 p.m. to 5:50 p.m. in the Kirk Hall lobby. The discussion panel will follow from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Selby Auditorium in Lewis Hall. The event is free and open to the public. For information, call Mary McCoy at (352) 588-7118 or email .
Saint Leo University, 33701 State Road 52 in St. Leo, will present “Fall Into Songs of the Roaring Twenties,” a student concert, on Oct. 8 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., in Selby Auditorium, Lewis Hall. For information, email , or leave a message at (352) 588-8401.
National Merit semifinalists
Officials of the National Merit Scholarship Corporation announced the names of about 16,000 semifinalists in the 65th annual National Merit Scholarship Program.
These high school seniors have the opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,600 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $31 million, to be offered next spring.
Local students that have been named as semifinalists are:
- Cypress Creek High School: Mindy L. Do
- Land O’ Lakes High School: Shannon S. Chen, Achyudhan R. Kutuva, Kathy Liu, Steven Miltenberger, Stanley S. Moonjeli, Elizabeth A. Thorner, Maxwell M. Twitmyer, Takashi Xu and Jennifer R. Zartmen
- Lutz (home-school): Mark T. Thivierge
- Mitchell High School: Bethany A. Bradshaw, Dustin G. Rendell and Amber L. Seaberg
- Pasco High School: Nicholas C. Gray and Joseph S. Hart
- Steinbrenner High School: Jonathan E. Barbara, Rebekah F. Hurwitz, Matthew R. Lee and Rana X. Scherer
- Wharton High School: Valeria M. Gutierrez and Shehzad S. Shah
- Wiregrass Ranch High School: Aidan J. Persaud
Saint Leo ranked best value
Saint Leo University was ranked as one of the best regional universities and best values in higher education in the South, in 2020 U.S. News & World Report’s Best Colleges rankings. Among regional universities in the South, Saint Leo ranked 25th, up from its 47th place ranking last year.
The university also jumped up to fifth place, from 14th place last year, among Best Value Schools in the South.
And, Saint Leo tied with Christian Brothers University (Tennessee) for 14th place as Best for Veterans School among southern regional universities, up from 31st place last year.
In a new category, Saint Leo was named to the Top Performers on Social Mobility in Southern Regional Universities list, tying for No. 10 with Columbia College (South Carolina).
For more information on the 2020 Best Colleges, visit USNews.com/best-colleges.
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