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Midway High seniors receive National Merit accolades

Midway High seniors receive National Merit accolades

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Midway National Merit honorees

Midway High School seniors attaining National Merit honors are (from left) Matthew Stamey, Ivy Koh, Amilia Warkentine, Michael Cuenca and Stephen Bender.

Five Midway High School seniors have been recognized through the National Merit Scholarship Program.

Amilia Warkentine is a National Merit Semifinalist. She is the daughter of Angie and Brian Warkentine, of Hewitt.

Amilia is a National AP Scholar, earning a perfect score on her ACT and highest scores possible on all 11 AP tests. She has also earned honors from Midway teacher recognition awards, Midway Panther Pride awards, and the National Spanish Exam. Her activities include UIL science, officer of the Midway Spanish Club and Midway High School National Honor Society. She takes Mandarin lessons, is a junior volunteer at Baylor Scott & White Hillcrest Medical Center, and is an assistant teacher at Kumon of Waco.

Upon graduation, she plans to study physics.

Finalists will be named in February 2020.

Commended Scholars are Stephen Bender, Ivy Koh and Matthew Stamey.

Stephen Bender, son of Kimlyn and Trudy Bender of Woodway, is a National AP Scholar with Distinction, debate captain and Texas Forensic Association state debate semifinalist. He is accomplished in music through his involvement in Midway’s Meistersingers choir and playing piano, earning a Superior-plus Rating in the Waco Music Teachers Association Piano Festival.

Stephen participates in National Honor Society, Youth Leadership Committee at First Baptist Church Waco, and as a volunteer at the Mayborn Museum.

He plans to pursue degrees in math fields upon graduation.

Ivy Koh, daughter of Yunsuk Koh and Hyunjung Lee of Woodway, is the UIL Cross-Examination Debate State Top Speaker Silver Gavel award recipient, National AP Scholar, a UIL State Solo and Ensemble Division I rating winner, and National Spanish Exam medalist. Her accomplishments are accompanied by leadership roles as varsity speech and debate team captain, Spanish Club vice president, student council officer, Symphony Orchestra concertmaster, and president of “Music for Heroes” at the Doris Miller Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

Ivy’s volunteer activities have earned her recognition as a National Congressional Award Silver Medalist and three-year Spirit of Midway Volunteerism Award winner for her work with the Hewitt Public Library and tutoring elementary and intermediate students.

Ivy plans to study biochemistry in college.

Matthew Stamey, son of James and Anndrea Stamey of Woodway, is an AP Scholar with Distinction earning highest scores on all AP tests and a perfect ACT Score. He is also a two-time National Spanish Exam medalist and three-year Spirit of Midway award recipient. Matthew is a member of National Honor Society, a three-year UIL All-Region Choir member in Chamber Singers and Meistersingers, and serves as a Spanish Club officer.

He has played varsity tennis all four years, earning four district team championships, two doubles championships, and placing first-team all-district for three years. He is also a Waco Tennis Association volunteer, tennis Special Olympics volunteer, and works tennis clinics for Ridgewood Country Club and USTA events.

Matthew plans to pursue a Baylor Business Fellows major after graduation.

Michael Cuenca, son of James and Adriana Cox of Woodway, and Jairo Cuenca of Syracuse, is a National Hispanic Scholar, QuestBridge Prep Scholar and College Board AP Scholar with Distinction. Michael is president of National Honor Society, member of the Spanish National Honor Society, student council, Spanish Club and Mountain Biking Club. He also played varsity soccer for three years and has played select soccer since fifth grade.

He is an active volunteer for The Salvation Army, the Really Big Fishing Event for Really Special People event, Keep Waco Beautiful, and Antioch Community Church youth groups and mission trips.

Upon graduation, Michael plans to pursue a degree in engineering.

Warkentine also joins Cuenca as a National Hispanic Scholar.

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