Cesar Chavez Student Named Gates Millennium Scholar

Posted by Community Relations Department on 5/2/2012

Jessica He was one of five Phoenix Union High School District students named Gates Millennium Scholars this spring, earning scholarships valued up to $250,000, which can be applied toward undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees.  Over 25,000 applied for the scholarship this year with 1,000 selected. Scholarship recipients are assessed in the areas of academic achievement, community service and leadership.    The goal of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Gates Millennium Scholars program is to promote academic excellence and provide an opportunity for outstanding minority students with financial need to reach their highest potential and increase representation of minorities in disciplines such as science, education, engineering, mathematics, public health and sciences.   

 Jessica He has a well-rounded background from her four years in Academic Decathlon.  During her career, the Champions won two regional titles, and finished in the top 10 at State the last three years.  This year at regionals, she won 7 medals, was the overall champion of the Scholastic Division and her perfect 1,000 score tied her for Most Outstanding Interview.  Only 16, she skipped 8th grade, is currently number four in her senior class, and wants to pursue a career in biomedical engineering.  She excels in science and math, public speaking and literature, and was Area Champion for the American Region Oratorical competition.  She plays violin and piano, is an officer for National Honors Society and spends several hours a week working at her church.  One of five daughters to Chinese immigrant parents, she was the first to be born in the U.S.  She is deciding between Ohio Wesleyan, University of Rochester and Drexel in Philadelphia.