PASADENA — A student at Polytechnic High School has been named a Presidential Scholar by President Bill Clinton and Education Secretary Richard Riley.
Leondra R. Kruger was one of 141 high school seniors chosen from throughout the nation for their academic and artistic achievements.
She was one of two students from California selected on the basis of standardized test scores, essays, school recommendations and transcripts.
"I am absolutely thrilled. I had no idea I had a chance for it," said Krueger, who plans to attend Harvard in the fall.
When she received the news Friday from a White House official, Krueger said, she screamed with joy. She is already a National Merit Scholarship winner and Southern California Edison Scholarship winner.
Along with the other students, she will visit Washington June 19-24 and receive a Presidential Scholar medallion at a White House ceremony. Krueger said she has been invited to visit Supreme Court Justice Byron White and several members of Congress.
Krueger is editor of the school newspaper, is active in the school speech and debate club, and lived in Italy last summer with a family as part of an American Field Services program.
She has also worked as a teaching assistant at Polytechnic summer school, been active in the student Sierra Club and taught music at Willard Elementary School in Pasadena.
Krueger is a former cello player with the Pasadena Youth Orchestra. She plans a career in public policy.
Dawn Cobb, Polytechnic director of college counseling, said, "All-round she is a superb student. She is very strong in all subjects."