This year was the 16th year of the American Heritage Scholarship Program is a partnership between The Modesto Bee, Stanislaus County Office of Education, and Modesto City Schools, which includes a public lecture and an essay competition for Stanislaus County High School juniors and seniors. Students from public, private, and charter schools were encouraged to apply.
Above are the top three scholarship award winners (left to right): Timea Friesen of Waterford High School ($1,500), Hannah Young of Gregori High School ($2,000), and Kaitlynn Tran of Gregori High School ($1,500)
362 students from 13 high schools entered the American Heritage Essay competition this year. 19 student essays were selected to receive scholarships by a panel of judges that consisted of educators, community members, and Superior Court Judges.
|$2,000||Young, Hannah||Gregori High School|
|$1,500||Friesen, Timea||Waterford High School|
|$1,500||Tran, Kaitlynn||Gregori High School|
|$1,000||Fahlen, Carmen||Gregori High School|
|$1,000||Pabalan, Russell||Oakdale High School|
|$500||Hijaouy, Zakaria||Gregori High School|
|$500||Jara, Garrett||Gregori High School|
|$500||Oliveira, Tyler||Gregori High School|
|$500||Spani, Shawn||Oakdale High School|
|$100||Bowman, Corina||Gregori High School|
|$100||Chhaly, Tristan||Gregori High School|
|$100||Glodek, Juliana||Gregori High School|
|$100||Hopkins, Joshua||Gregori High School|
|$100||Jensen, Alexander||Gregori High School|
|$100||Meyer, Micaela||Gregori High School|
|$100||Rohrer, Anna||Whitmore Charter High School|
|$100||Swanberg, Joy||Gregori High School|
|$100||Swartz, Katherine||Gregori High School|
|$100||Tan, Aron Christopher Lee||Gregori High School|
2017 Essay Prompt
Is the death penalty constitutional? The Eighth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution prohibits the government from inflicting “cruel and unusual punishments.” Many believe depriving someone of his or her life is “cruel,” “unusual,” and immoral, and therefore unconstitutional. Others feel some crimes—treason, murder with special circumstances, killing members of law enforcement, etc.—require the ultimate punishment. Take a position and defend your point of view using logical argument and citations to relevant historical, social, and legal sources.
Guest Speaker Presentation
Aaron Pennekamp is an associate in the San Francisco office of Munger, Tolles & Olson.
Mr. Pennekamp earned his law degree from the Georgetown University Law Center, where he served as the editor in chief of The Georgetown Law Journal. He received his undergraduate degree in international politics from Georgetown University, where he graduated magna cum laude and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. While attending law school, Mr. Pennekamp also served in the Virginia Army National Guard. He deployed to Iraq in 2010 as an infantry rifle platoon leader. Mr. Pennekamp joined the firm after clerkships with Justice Stephen G. Breyer of the U.S. Supreme Court, Judge John D. Bates of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, and Judge Jeffrey S. Sutton of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.
Click here to view (Courtesy of Downey High School): https://youtue/.bN0Ms7wPw0hY
This program is entirely funded by generous community members, businesses, and organizations. (Interested donors may reach out all throughout the year to SCOE at 238-1701 to support this program) Funding for 2017 Scholarships were received from:
Bank of Stockton
Ramon and Barbara Bawanan
E. & J. Gallo Winery
Tom & Dianne Changnon
James & Carol Enochs
Curtis & Nancy Grant
Robert Hampton & Teresa Alley
Kiwanis Club of Greater Turlock
Law Offices of Frank M. Lima
Modesto Irrigation District
Mocse Credit Union
Modesto Lion’s Club
Modesto Sunset Lion’s Club
Aaron Pennekamp, Associate Attorney
Martin & Sharon Peterson
Fred & Susan Rich
Col. & Mrs. John S. Rogers, ASAF (RET.)
James & Peggy Shiovitz
Turlock Irrigation District
Doug and Brenda Ulrich
2016 Packet & Winners
2015 Packet & Winners
The American Heritage Scholarship Program seeks to increase our understanding of what it means to be an American. Unlike other nations, the essence of American nationality has little to do with our country of origin or the specifics of our religious faith. While the American spirit embraces such diversity, what unites us as a people is a shared set of principles and ideals which proclaim our freedoms and set forth our responsibilities.
This program is intended to encourage teens, and the public, to think about what makes the United States unique in the world, with a focus on the Constitution. Previous lectures have looked at the Patriot Act, the First Amendment, the separation of church and state, and the role of political parties.