Return to Headlines

Young is Presidential Scholar

Josiah Young, a senior at Hickory Ridge High School, has been named a Presidential Scholar in Career and Technical Education. There are only 20 students nationwide to be declared Presidential Scholars for CTE each year.


Young, a Morehead-Cain Scholarship recipient will attend the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill this fall. He is one of four honorees from North Carolina --  joining Clara Brodey, from  East Chapel Hill High School, Elizabeth Greene of Cleveland Innovation Academy and Nipun Gorantla, of Marvin Ridge High School.

TheWhite House Commission on Presidential Scholars selects scholars annually based on their academic success, artistic and technical excellence, essays, school evaluations and transcripts, as well as a demonstrated commitment to community service and leadership.


“U.S. Presidential Scholars have always represented the future of our country and the bright promise it holds.I want each of these remarkable students to know: your passion and intellect, pursuit of excellence, and spirit of service are exactly what our country needs,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. “On behalf of President Biden, I am delighted to join your family, friends, and communities in celebrating your accomplishments.Aim high, share your talents, and continue embracing opportunities to lead as your exciting future unfolds.”


Of the 3.7 million students expected to graduate from high school this year, more than 5,000 candidates qualified for the 2023 awards determined by outstanding performance on the College Board SAT or ACT exams or through nominations made bychief state school officers, other partner recognition organizationsand YoungArts, the National Foundation for the Advancement of Artists.


“We’re extremely proud of Josiah, “ said Cabarrus County Schools’ Superintendent Dr. John Kopicki.  “He has achieved a level of excellence that we encourage all our students to strive for.  He is a representative champion for us all, and we look forward to his future.”


North Carolina State Superintendent of Public Instruction Catherine Truitt offered her congratulations to the four scholars from North Carolina, noting their achievement is even more impressive since each had to overcome the pandemic’s challenges while in high school.


“Like the entire class of 2023, Clara, Elizabeth, Josiah, and Nipun faced high hurdles to continue learning and achieving,” Truitt said. “These four students are to be commended for stepping up and standing out. They serve as role models to their peers and represent our best hopes as a state and nation.”


As directed by Presidential Executive Order, the 2023 U.S. Presidential Scholars are comprised of one young man and one young woman from each state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, and U.S. families living abroad, as well as 15 chosen at-large, 20 scholars in the arts, and 20 scholars in career and technical education.

Created in 1964, the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program has honored over 8,000 of the nation’s top-performing students. The program was expanded in 1979 to recognize students who demonstrate exceptional talent in the visual, literary and performing arts. In 2015, the program was again extended to recognize students who demonstrate ability and accomplishment in career and technical education fields.

The Presidential Scholars Class of 2023 will be recognized for their outstanding achievement this summer with an online recognition program.

A complete list of 2023 U.S. Presidential Scholars is available at