New EJC Catholic High School

The site of a new Catholic high school in Eastern Jackson County will be dedicated today, May 3.

A groundbreaking ceremony will take place at 11 a.m. at an 80 acre site located at 85th Street and Lee’s Summit Road in Kansas City. The Diocese of Kansas City - St. Joseph selected the  site for the new high school based on a 2010 study and demographic analysis by the firm of O’Meara, Ferguson, Whelan and Conway. That study identified the area near Interstate 470 and Missouri 291 as centrally located and within reasonable drive time of feeder schools and significant, growing populations of prospective students and families. The Diocese purchased the property in 2012 for $2.6 million, with additional land donated by the seller.

The new high school will be named St. Michael the Archangel High School, and it is scheduled to open in 2015.

Speakers at the ceremony include Lee’s Summit Mayor Randy Rhoads, Catholic Schools Superintendent Dan Peters of Kansas City, St. Joseph Bishop Robert W. Finn and the new school’s inaugural president John Purk.

“St. Michael the Archangel High School will be an academically excellent, distinctly Catholic and fiscally stable school suited to 21st century education in an area that has the greatest potential for enrollment,” said Peters in a release.


Hicks in Who’s Who

Sadie Hicks of Grain Valley was named to Who’s Who at the University of Central Missouri. The 2010 graduate of Grain Valley High School will graduate from UCM in May 2014 with a degree in public relations and was one of 23 UCM students who were selected for inclusion into the group. Each year, two Charno Award recipients are selected from those named to Who’s Who at Central Missouri.

The Who’s Who at Central Missouri Award is presented to baccalaureate degree candidates who have met criteria that includes leadership ability, excellence of performance in scholastic work, participation in the leadership of social and service organizations and extracurricular activities and character above reproach. Her parents are Kenneth and Irene Hicks of Grain Valley.


Smedley earns scholarship

Blue Springs South Senior Sarah Smedley was awarded a $1,500 scholarship by the Education Foundation of the Western Chapter of the Missouri Society of Professional Engineers. She was selected based on her academic achievements and involvement in her community. Smedley is planning to study Civil and Architectural Engineering in the fall.

Dillon is Merit honoree

Blue Springs South High School student Connor M. Dillon was part of the first group of announced winners in the 59th annual National Merit Scholarship Program.

Approximately 1,000 high school seniors have won corporate-sponsored National Merit Scholarship awards financed by about 200 corporations, company foundations and other business organizations. Most of these awards are renewable are renewable for up to four years of college undergraduate study and provide annual stipends that range from $500 to $10,000 per year.

Recipients can use their awards at any regionally accreddited U.S. college or university of their choice. About 1.5 million juniors in some 22,000 high schools entered the 2014 National Merit Scholarship competition when they took the 2012 National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. To be considered for a National Merit Scholarship, semifinalists had to fulfill requirements to advance to finalist standing. Each semifinalist was asked to complete a detailed scholarship application, which included writing an essay and providing information about extracurricular activities, awards and leadership positions, along with maintaining an outstanding academic record and be endorsed by a high school official.

Dillon’s probable career field is medicine and sponsored by Walgreen Co., a national drugstore chain.


Students receive Truman Memorial awards

Aimee Jones of Little Blue Elementary and Jenna Wise from Blackburn Elementary in Independence were the 2014 Harry S. Truman Memorial Scholarship Fund recipients.

The fund, which honors President Truman, was designed to help full-time certified teachers who teach in primary or secondary or private schools located within Independence city limits. Both the city of Independence and the Rotary Club of Independence work together to fund the scholarship and create the selection committee each year. The funds are managed by the Truman Heartland Community Foundation.

Both recipients will be honored during an upcoming Rotary meeting in May.

– Brandon Dumsky