Even though she is moving on from Lakota East High School with one of the largest college scholarships in the district’s history, for recent graduate Paige Bentley, it’s not easy to leave a place where she made her mark in so many ways.
Bentley has landed a $200,000 Army scholarship to Princeton University.
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She did it by excelling in the Butler Tech biomedical science program at the high school, where she graduated among the top 25 academic performers – out of 700 classmates – while being the vice president of the school’s National Honor Society club.
But that’s not all.
Bentley won a medal in the state Science Olympiad, worked as a Whiz Kids tutor and is the Liberty Township school’s reigning prom queen.
“My end goal is I want to be a physician in the Army,” said Bentley, who begins classes on Princeton’s campus in New Jersey in September.
“My dad went to West Point and my maternal grandfather served in the Army for much of his career, so I didn’t grow up moving every few years but the value of service is definitely there,” she said.
She credits Butler Tech’s biomedical science classes at Lakota East for propelling her to Princeton.
“The Butler Tech class was very important to me after I started taking it my freshman year. If not for that class, I doubt I’d be sitting where I am now. The scholarship is incredibly generous,” she said.
“And the chemical engineering program at Princeton is among the top 10 in the country,” said Bentley.
Lakota East physics teacher Brandon Bright wasn’t surprised by Bentley snagging one of the district’s largest scholarships.
“Paige is such an independent and already mature person. She thinks things through and she leads others well. She deserves it, and it’s good to see her get something she deserves,” said Bright.
Paige is looking forward to starting her Ivy League college career.
“I’m incredibly excited. The opportunities at Princeton are bountiful.”