Shady Side Academy junior Nick Lauer is one of 501 students nationwide (and one of approximately 50 in Western Pennsylvania) who were named 2018 Carson Scholars, earning a $1,000 college scholarship and recognition package. Lauer and other Carson Scholars from the region were honored at an awards banquet on Saturday, April 7, at Heinz Field. Dr. Ben Carson and his wife, Candy were there to present the awards.
The Carson Scholars Fund awards $1,000 college scholarships to students in grades 4-11 who excel academically and are dedicated to serving their communities. Scholarship winners receive the honor of being named "Carson Scholars" and are awarded an Olympic-sized medal and a trophy for their school to celebrate their accomplishments. Applicants are nominated by their schools based on academic achievements and commitment to their communities, and only one student can be nominated per school. Carson Scholars must have a minimum GPA of 3.75 and display humanitarian qualities through community service.
Lauer has excelled in academics, arts and athletics at SSA. He was chosen to serve as a "Scribe" (peer writing tutor) and won the freshman physics award. His photography has earned two gold keys, five silver keys and one honorable mention in the Regional Scholastic Art Awards over the past three years. He is a three-sport athlete, helping the boys soccer team to a WPIAL title last fall and winning a WPIAL gold medal as part of 200 freestyle relay team in swimming this winter. He qualified for the PIAA Swimming Championships in both 2017 and 2018. He also competes on the track & field team.
Lauer is very involved in serving the community. He organized a winter coat drive to benefit North Hills Community Outreach, is an active member of SSA's Chiapas Club (which raises funds to support children's education in Chiapas, Mexico), and volunteers at his church. He has been selected as a recipient of SSA's prestigious Parkin Fellowship for summer 2018, when he will travel to Chile to help teach English to underprivileged children.The Carson Scholars Fund is a nonprofit organization founded in 1994 by pediatric neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson and his wife, Candy. Since 1996, more than 7,300 scholarships have been awarded.