Desoto County News

Two students from DeSoto named U.S. Presidential Scholars program semifinalists

Two high school seniors from DeSoto County are among seven in Mississippi who have been named 2024 U.S. Presidential Scholars semifinalists. In making the announcement last week, the Mississippi Department of Education (MDE) said the program honors the nation’s most distinguished graduating high school seniors.  

The two students from DeSoto County are Omair Jamil of DeSoto Central High School, and Iris Xue of the Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science, who is from Southaven.  

According to MDE, the state’s semifinalists were chosen from among thousands of candidates nationwide.  The semifinalists form the pool from which up to 161 students will be chosen a 2024 U.S. Presidential Scholar.

The 2024 U.S. Presidential Scholars will be announced in early May. Scholars are chosen based on accomplishments in academic and artistic success, career and technical fields, leadership, and involvement in school and the community. The scholars represent excellence in education and the promise of greatness in America’s young people.

Created in 1964, the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program honors the nation’s top-performing students with the prestigious award given to honorees during the annual ceremony in Washington D.C. The program was later expanded to recognize students who demonstrate exceptional talent in the arts and career and technical education fields.

The complete list is as follows: 

  • Charles Frugé, Oxford High School
  • Omair Jamil, DeSoto Central High School
  • Noah Lee, Mississippi School for Mathematics & Science
  • Payton Sanders, Pelahatchie Attendance Center
  • Sydney Smith, Hattiesburg High School
  • Kayla Truong, Northwest Rankin High School
  • Iris Xue, Mississippi School for Mathematics & Science