Rahul Suresh Kanna, part of the Lafayette High
Class of 2020, has been named a U.S. Presidential Scholar by the United States Department of Education.
Suresh Kanna is one of only 161 seniors from around the nation to earn this honor, which is bestowed upon students who have demonstrated outstanding academic achievement, artistic excellence, technical expertise, leadership, citizenship, service and contribution to school and community. He is one of only two Presidential Scholars from the state of Missouri.
"These exemplary young people have excelled inside the classroom and out," U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos said in a press release. "And, while they are facing unprecedented challenges as they graduate from high school into a world that looks much different than it did just a few months ago, their determination, resilience and commitment to excellence will serve them well as they pursue their next steps."
Suresh Kanna scored a perfect 36 on his ACT last summer, was a member of the 2019-2020 Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis Student Board of Directors and was one of Lafayette's 14 "Glory of Missouri" representatives recognized on the floor of the Missouri State Capitol in February.
He plans to study finance and economics at Washington University in St. Louis.
"I’m extremely honored to be a part of this year’s class of Presidential Scholars," Suresh Kanna said. "Without the teachers I’ve had to inspire me, as well as my friends and family’s support, this wouldn’t have been possible. I look forward to connecting and exchanging ideas with the other scholars at alumni events in future years."
The Presidential Scholars Class of 2020 will be recognized for their outstanding achievement this summer as public health circumstances permit.
Each U.S. Presidential Scholar has the opportunity to name his or her most influential teacher, and each distinguished teacher is honored with a personal letter from the Secretary of Education. Suresh Kanna chose Lafayette social studies teacher Lori Zang-Berns for recognition.
"This is just the start of my journey," Suresh Kanna said. "I’m ecstatic to continue growing and progressing as a student over the next four years. Once again, I sincerely thank everyone who’s had my back.”