Three Iowa high school students have been named to the 58th class of U.S. Presidential Scholars. The program recognizes up to 161 high school seniors from across the country for their accomplishments in academics, the arts, and career and technical education fields.

Iowa’s U.S. Presidential Scholars include Kavya Kalathur from Pleasant Valley Community High School in Bettendorf.

“I am proud to join the family, friends and school communities of each of our scholars in congratulating them on their accomplishments and I look forward to their continued success in college, postsecondary career training and the workforce,” said Iowa Department of Education Director Ann Lebo.

Students are selected based on academic achievement, artistic and technical excellence, essays, school evaluations and transcripts, as well as community service, leadership and a demonstrated commitment to high standards.

As directed by Presidential Executive Order, the 2022 U.S. Presidential Scholars are comprised of one young man and one young woman from each state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, and U.S. families living overseas, as well as 15 chosen at-large, 20 scholars in the arts and 20 scholars in career and technical education.

The U.S. Presidential Scholars Program was created in 1964 and has honored over 7,900 of the nation’s top-performing students over the years. The program was expanded in 1979 to recognize students who demonstrate outstanding talent in the visual, literary and performing arts. In 2015, the program was extended to recognize students who demonstrate extraordinary ability and accomplishment in career and technical education fields.