Arts Academy student named institution’s 46th Presidential Scholar in the Arts

Creative writer Sophie Paquette was one of 20 students from across the nation selected to the 2019 cohort.

Interlochen Center for the Arts is proud to announce that Arts Academy creative writer Sophie Paquette (IAC 17, IAA 17-) has been named a 2019 Presidential Scholar in the Arts.

Paquette, a native of Bloomington, Indiana, is the Academy’s 46th student to receive the honor—more than any other high school in the nation. Paquette is the 20th scholar produced by the Academy’s Creative Writing Division.

“Sophie is an incredibly self-motivated, inquisitive student who brings a genuine passion for learning to every classroom she enters,” said Mika Perrine, Interim Director of Creative Writing at Interlochen Center for the Arts. “Sophie's originality of vision and depth of voice are at a level rarely encountered in a high school setting. Her strength as a writer derives from her desire to keep pushing the envelope, discovering and inventing new forms, and challenging herself to move beyond the expected and into the unknown.”

Paquette is one of only 20 students from across the nation selected to receive the designation of Presidential Scholar in the Arts. These recipients are chosen based on their academic and artistic excellence, leadership qualities, and by their community engagement. In June, Paquette will join the other 19 Arts Scholars and the 140 Scholars in other disciplines for several days of recognition in Washington, D.C. During the recognition activities, Paquette will receive a Presidential Medallion and participate in a showcase at the John F. Kennedy Performing Arts Center.

The United States Presidential Scholar Program was founded in 1964 to recognize the nation’s most distinguished high school seniors. Candidates for the award are selected on the basis of outstanding academic achievement. Scholars in the arts must also demonstrate artistic excellence through participation in the YoungArts program.