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Three SMJUHSD students have been selected as Coca-Cola Scholar semifinalists for their leadership skills and contributions inside and outside the classroom.

Righetti Warriors Kiera Van Patten and Zoi Urban and Pioneer Valley Panther Sua Vargas have shown superior academic promise, stellar community service efforts and volunteerism with peers, according to School Counselor Eric Blanco.

The trio earned the recognition from a pool of 87,000 students nationwide, of which about 1,900 semifinalists were chosen. Their applications are currently under review. Regional finalists receive a minimum $1,000 college scholarship, with 150 applicants receiving a $20,000 college scholarship.

Blanco has his fingers crossed for good reason.

“With all the rising costs to earning a higher education, it would be a great blessing for one of our outstanding scholars to be awarded this scholarship,’’ Blanco said.

The achievement-based scholarship is awarded to students who show the capacity to lead and serve, as well as their commitment to making a significant impact on their schools and communities.

NONDISCRIMINATION POLICY: The Santa Maria Joint Union High School District is committed to ensuring equal, fair, and meaningful access to employment and education services. The SMJUHSD does not discriminate in any employment practice, education program, or educational activity on the basis and/or association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics of age, ancestry, color, disability, ethnicity, ethnic group identifications, gender, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, marital, family or parental status, medical condition, military or veteran status, nationality, national origin, immigration status, political affiliation, pregnancy and related conditions, race, religion, retaliation, sex (including sexual harassment), sexual orientation, or any other basis prohibited by California state and federal nondiscrimination laws respectively. Not all bases of discrimination will apply to both education services and employment. If you believe you have been subjected to discrimination, harassment, intimidation, or bullying, immediately contact the District’s Discrimination, Equity and Title IX Compliance Officer Mr. Kevin R. Platt at 2560 Skyway Drive, Santa Maria, CA 93455, (805) 922-4573 or You may request a copy of SMJUHSD’s Uniform Complaint Procedures, Non-Discrimination Policies, Sexual Harassment Policies or click here.