WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — Three local seniors in high school are getting a dream come true. They each competed for and won a $64,000 scholarship to attend Wichita State University (WSU) this August.

Today, WSU announced the winners of the 2023 Harry Gore Memorial Scholarship:

  • Maley Hansen, Wichita North High School
  • Lesly Hernandez, Maize High School
  • Jayden Island, Derby High School

Students who want a chance at getting the scholarship must have either a minimum unweighted GPA of 3.5, a minimum ACT composite score of 27, a minimum SAT composite of 1280 or rank in the top 10% of their class at the end of their junior year.

The application requires an essay that makes up half of the score in the Distinguished Scholarship Invitational (DSI). Almost 500 students qualified for the next step in the DSI — a competition on a Saturday in November. They took part in group problem-solving activities and interviews. The day of events made up the other half of the DSI score.

From there, the pool of students was whittled down to semifinalists in December and then 14 finalists. The Gore Scholar selection committee interviewed the finalists last week before announcing the three winners.

(Courtesy: Wichita State University)

WSU provided this extra information about them:

Maley Hansen

Hansen is planning to study business administration. She is a four-year varsity member and team captain of her Scholars Bowl team and is the current chapter president for DECA and Business Professionals of America. Hansen is a Wichita North athlete, participating as a varsity member in soccer, and was a state qualifier in golf and wrestling. She volunteers for Habitat for Humanity, Red Cross Blood Drive, Bank of America and more.

Lesly Hernandez

Hernandez will major in political science. At Maize High, Lesly is co-president of the Multicultural Club, senior class president and secretary of the National Honor Society. She holds first chair alpha violin in the Maize High School orchestra.

Jayden Island

Island plans to major in biological sciences. They are in Derby High’s National Honor Society, president of debate and forensics, and president of Future Health Professionals. They also participate in track and field and are a member of the student council and KEY Club.

Gore Memorial Scholarship

The scholarship started in 1952. Theodore and Ralph Gore established it in memory of their father, Harry Gore. Harry was a Russian immigrant whose involvement in the oil industry brought him to El Dorado in 1915. Education was so important to him that he moved a school teacher to the area to educate his children. He also believed education builds leaders and would create a greater Kansas.