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U.S. Presidential Scholar Academic Award

U.S. Presidential Scholar Academic Award


The Office of Secondary Leading and Learning is pleased to announce that Nicolette Espino, senior at Eau Gallie High School, has been chosen as the Brevard Public Schools nominee for the U.S. Presidential Scholar Academic Award. 


The mission of this program, established in 1964, is to recognize and honor superior high school seniors.  519 seniors throughout our county were initially identified as meeting the minimum requirements for this prestigious award.  From those 519 students, the following were chosen as school nominees. 


  • Ethan Broome, Astronaut High School
  • Molly West, Bayside High School
  • Kathryn Bree, Brevard Virtual School
  • Johnnie Jones, Cocoa Beach Junior/Senior High
  • Jaden Edgecombe, Cocoa High School
  • Nicolette Espino, Eau Gallie High School
  • Abigail Shepard, Edgewood Junior/Senior High
  • Saira Calderon-Encarnacion, Heritage High School
  • Diana Ishaev, Melbourne High School
  • Nolan Aycock, Merritt Island High School
  • Emma Risch, Palm Bay Magnet High School
  • Michelle Kirkpatrick, Rockledge High School
  • Isabelle Sealey, Satellite High School
  • Tessa Mitzlaff, Space Coast Junior/Senior High
  • Alyssa Traina, Titusville High School
  • Diya Turakhia, Viera High
  • Matthew Krininger, West Shore Junior/Senior High


From these 17 students, Nicolette Espino was chosen based on her Academic Record, Community Involvement and Leadership.


Nicolette has taken on the most rigorous course of study available at Eau Gallie High School. She has earned the AICE Diploma with Distinction and is nearing completion of her Associate’s of Arts Degree from EFSC.  She has maintained a cumulative unweighted GPA of a 4.0, 4.6 weighted GPA and has achieved stellar SAT scores. 


Nicolette moved to the United States from Peru as a 7th grader.  As an immigrant to the United States, English was not her first language.  She used this experience to push herself to work harder, “be resilient and have enough motivation to develop sensitivity for others, high achievement and intellectual growth.” 


From her School Counselor, Rich Larson:  “Nicolette is energized by rigor and novel content.  She genuinely loves learning and the growth than accompanies new challenges.  Beyond the classroom Nicolette serves as a peer tutor and Student Ambassador.  In both of these roles Nicolette is reliable, consistent, kind in her interactions, and very effective in her instruction.“  Nicolette is also a student leader of Students Working Against Tobacco.  She has spoken twice at Brevard’s School Board Meetings addressing a policy change for in-school vaping and is in the process of meeting with a Florida senator to discuss the same issues. 


Approximately 600 candidates are named national semi-finalists.  Their names and supporting materials are forwarded to the White House Commission for further review.  In April, the Commission on Presidential Scholars reviews the applications of all semi-finalists, applying the same criteria used by the review committee. 


All scholars are honored for their accomplishments during the National Recognition Program, held in Washington, D.C.  During this trip, U.S. Presidential Scholars are guests of the US Department of Education and the White House Commission and enjoy an all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C. to meet with government officials, educators, and other accomplished people.  To commemorate their achievement, the Scholars are awarded the Presidential Scholars Medallion at a ceremony sponsored by the White House.


Congratulations to Nicolette!