Shawnee Mission South and Shawnee Mission West high schools were named 2022 All Stars as part of the APPLY Kansas campaign. These awards, presented for the first time this year, were announced at the June Kansas Board of Regents meeting. The APPLY Kansas Campaign is a statewide program sponsored by the Kansas Board of Regents set to increase students’ post-secondary planning.
The Board recognized 54 high schools across Kansas. Each school participated in the APPLY Kansas campaign. To participate, schools sponsor a college application event in October and hold two additional events in the same school year. Those events include a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) Completion event to encourage and support families in completing the FAFSA financial aid application and a College Signing Day event to celebrate all of the different paths seniors chose to pursue after graduation.
Both high schools accomplished these All-Star tasks under the leadership of, Lucy Coopman, SM South college advisor, and Kim Urenda, SM West counselor.
“As a goal for all students to be future ready, Shawnee Mission South strongly encourages families to pursue post-secondary educational options and works to promote FAFSA completion options,” Principal Todd Dain shared.
Hosting their 6th Annual ‘Future Focus Fiesta’ last October, SM South engaged families in the FAFSA process and provided opportunities to learn more about financial aid options. It offered a Q&A time directly with college financial aid and scholarship representatives and the opportunity to connect with career and college representatives.
“These events increase the access that our students and families have to financial resources and increases the options they have for education beyond high school,” Dain noted.
Principal Steve Loe noted how events over the past few years at Shawnee Mission West have helped students prepare for the future.
“Our first-generation college students have gleaned more information, coaching, and guidance regarding college and post-secondary options, thus giving them a new outlook on their futures,” Loe expressed.
Each All-Star School receives a certificate and a vinyl banner in recognition of this accomplishment.
“Truly you have an All-Star High School and talented All-Star faculty,” Tara Lebar, Kansas Board of Regents Associate Director, Academic Affairs, stated as the schools were announced.