Outstanding leadership, civic involvement and academic talent have earned four Oklahoma high school seniors a scholarship named in honor of one of Oklahoma’s former chancellors.
Micheal Barnes, Lawton MacArthur High School; Lindsay Barron, Classen School of Advanced Studies, Oklahoma City; Mikaela Hooper, Tushka High School; and Mandy Schroeder, Kremlin-Hillsdale High School, will each receive a $2,000 scholarship as part of the Chancellor Hans Brisch Scholarship program.
The Chancellor’s Scholars Program, created in 1990 with private funds, was renamed in 2006 to honor Brisch, who served as chancellor of the Oklahoma State System of Higher Education for 15 years. Brisch retired in 2003 and passed away in February 2006.
The 2012 Chancellor Hans Brisch Scholars were selected from 73 nominations made by high school principals statewide.
“These talented high school seniors make a difference in the lives of others by consistently giving back to their communities,” said Chancellor Glen D. Johnson. “The Chancellor Hans Brisch Scholarship Program consists of an elite group of young Oklahoma leaders. We congratulate, honor and wish each of these students the best as they continue their education.”
Barnes has been an active member of his community for many years by placing flags in federal cemeteries, initiating a penny drive for tornado victims and making care packages for veterans in Veterans Affairs hospitals. In an effort to improve the local environment, he initiated a conservation project to recycle monofilament line, otherwise known as fishing line. He built and placed collection bins around the many lakes of the Ft. Sill and Lawton community. The collected line was shipped to a fishing company to be recycled into crates designed to provide additional habitat areas for fish. He also developed presentations to educate the public on the proper disposal of monofilament line and submitted an environmental sustainability report to Oklahoma Today magazine.
In addition to his involvement in the community, Barnes has taken an interest in his fellow students through developing annual coat drives, educating students about child abuse and neglect, developing a book drive for the Ronald McDonald House and planning a musical instrument drive for low-income children. He initiated and led a fundraiser to construct orchestra cabinets for MacArthur Middle School, a project that brought in more than $2,000 and 970 volunteer man-hours.
Barnes has been recognized locally and nationally for his volunteer service. He has received the Presidential Volunteer Service Gold Award three times, as well as the silver and bronze awards. He has also received the William T. Hornaday Award for his efforts in the field of conservation and has been selected to attend the Military Order of World Wars Southwest Youth Leadership Conference and the American Legion Boys State delegation. He is a student council class representative, academic team captain, Key Club treasurer and assistant junior scoutmaster for his troop.
Barnes maintains an unweighted GPA of 4.0 and plans to attend Oklahoma State University in the fall to pursue a degree in music education.
Barron has been very involved in her school and her community. She has served as a volunteer at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Presbyterian Tower and Manos Juntos Free Clinic pharmacy. She has also become involved in teaching music to at-risk students through the Arts Academy, where she is responsible for developing weekly lesson plans, selecting music and instructing the students. As a result of her passion for reading, she has founded a book club at the Classen School of Advanced Studies by using Facebook as the primary communication tool. The club has completed six books, and their membership continues to grow. She has also organized a book drive to provide books for homeless students, volunteers at the public library and has worked at children’s carnivals and Friends of the Library events.
Barron is National Honor Society president, Spanish Club vice president and Key Club treasurer. She is currently in the rigorous International Baccalaureate program and has taken a number of honors, Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate classes each year.
Barron maintains a 4.38 GPA and plans to attend the University of Oklahoma in the fall.
Hooper has served her community through efforts with the Salvation Army, Toys for Tots and Relay for Life. She has also helped cook and serve Thanksgiving dinners to the homeless, helped elderly neighbors build fences, assisted with roadside cleanup and volunteered as a nurse’s aide during the 2011 flu outbreak. She works each day as an aide to teachers – reading to younger students, tutoring and grading papers. As a teacher’s aide, she challenged the other aides and their classrooms in a reading competition in which the class that read and passed library tests about the most books would receive a pizza party. She worked with the Tushka PTA to have the pizza provided. One of her most significant achievements was the initiation of cleanup and other service efforts following the EF3 tornado that ravaged Tushka April 14, 2011. She recruited and organized her fellow students to remove debris left by the tornado.
Hooper currently serves as senior class president, president of the Gifted and Talented Program, and National Honor Society secretary. She has also served as vice president of the sophomore class and junior class president.
Hooper maintains a 4.0 GPA and has been recognized on the superintendent’s honor roll throughout her high school career. She plans to attend Northeastern State University in the fall.
Schroeder has been instrumental in fundraisers for the Oklahoma City Ronald McDonald House and Relay for Life. She has participated in and led drives for baby food, canned food, coats and blankets to benefit local individuals in need and has volunteered more than 200 hours of service at Integris Bass Baptist Health Center.
Schroeder has a history of not only serving the community in general but of also meeting specific needs within the community. In 2009, after a local second-grade student had been diagnosed with leukemia, Schroder organized fundraisers of selling t-shirts and holding a raffle. She personally went throughout the town selling tickets and raised more than $500 with the raffle alone. In 2011, she organized multiple fundraisers to benefit two local boys who had been injured in a grain elevator accident. She solicited the community again for contributions and collected items donated for the injured boys, sold t-shirts with her class and organized a bake sale that raised more than $250.
Schroeder has served as the president of the Kremlin-Hillsdale 4-H, Garfield County 4-H and 4-H Northwest District and was recently inducted into the Garfield County 4-H Hall of Fame. She was also selected as one of three Oklahomans to serve as a 4-H National Congress delegate. She is a member of the National Honor Society, has been recognized on the superintendent’s honor roll each year and serves as captain of the Varsity Academic Team.
Schroeder maintains a 4.0 GPA and plans to attend OSU in the fall.In the 20 years since its inception, the Chancellor’s Scholars Program has recognized 84 students with the award. Private gifts, including professional honoraria from the current and past chancellors, support the program, which honors not only Brisch but the office of chancellor and all individuals who hold that office.