The Americana at Brand announced last week the recipients of The 2016 Spirit of American Youth Scholarship.
Christin Hirn of Notre Dame High School and George Hou of Arcadia High School will each be awarded a $10,000 scholarship. Established in 2009 by Caruso Affiliated, the scholarship invests in the future of the next generation by honoring high school seniors who reside in or attend school in the San Fernando and San Gabriel Valleys exhibiting outstanding spirit, leadership, and social responsibility.
Hundreds of applications were submitted by students throughout the San Gabriel and San Fernando valleys including the communities of Glendale, Pasadena, Arcadia, La Cañada, La Crescenta, Los Feliz, San Marino, Sherman Oaks, and Studio City, with many qualified applications. These two students were selected as this year’s recipients based on academic potential, contributions to the betterment of their communities, and their vision on how they would invest in their communities to create a brighter future for the next generation.
“We created The Spirit of American Youth Scholarship to support and inspire outstanding individuals who have exceeded expectations in their academic endeavors and civic leadership in the community,” said Rick J. Caruso, Caruso Affiliated founder and chief executive officer. “Both Christin and George personify The Spirit of American Youth, and I am excited to see all they achieve in the coming years and their impact on generations to come.”
Christin Hirn is a graduate of Notre Dame High School. Hirn devoted much of her high school years to volunteer work in her community and held the title of captain for both varsity water polo and varsity swim teams. She is a member of the National Honors Society and Advanced Placement Scholars Program her junior and senior years. In addition, she was awarded maxima cum laude throughout her four years at Notre Dame High School. Hirn has been accepted to California Lutheran University with a plan to double-major in exercise science and biology.
George Hou is a graduate of Arcadia High School, where he earned the highest of academic achievements, while dedicating much of his time to research to help the hearing impaired by improving the quality of hearing aids. Through months of rigorous study, he developed an algorithm, testing his method by recording sounds in his backyard composed of wind, traffic, chirping birds and barking dogs. Through these tests, he concluded that he had successfully implemented blind-source-separation on mixed signals. This breakthrough earned him the Intel Science Competition, commonly recognized as the junior Noble Peace Prize. Hou was presented with many impressive academic achievement awards throughout his high school years, including a silver medal in the International High School Mathematics Research Competition, a finalist in the National Junior Science & Humanities Symposium, a winner of the Nordstrom Scholarship award, a winner of the Coca-Cola Scholarship award, first place in the Southern California Debate League Competition, and named the Best Delegate in the Model United Nations Conference, among others. In addition to these outstanding accomplishments, he was also named the Arcadia High School class valedictorian. Hou was also a member of the varsity tennis club, and was involved in Arcadia High School’s performing arts program as part of the Gold Wheel Monastery Choir in his four years at Arcadia. Hou has been accepted to Harvard University where he plans to major in applied mathematics.