Roots recognized by College Board


Photo by Hunter Reardon

Junior Ava Roots received recognition from the College Board. Here she is pictured in front of Stillwater’s “America’s Best High Schools 2019” poster.

Hunter Reardon, Social Media Editor

To assist underrepresented students, the College Board created National Recognition Programs in 1983. This year, junior Ava Roots was honored by the College Board National Hispanic Recognition Program. Roots were one of 7,000 others across the country that were invited to apply. 

Roots has a passion for education equity, which ties into this award. She was recently added to the education equity subcommittee run by the Minnesota Youth Council. 

When asked about what she does with the Minnesota Youth Council, Roots said that she likes what she does, and she thinks it is “important work to create a more equitable system than we have now.”

It is essential to know that the National Recognition Program is not a scholarship program. Instead, the program claims to connect underrepresented students to colleges. Although, Roots has yet to be contacted by any colleges or universities.

“I think it’s mostly a program by the College Board as an attempt to recognize these barriers to education, even within new programs, such as the PSAT, SAT and AP scores, like you see those divisions and access to education with black students especially being at the bottom of schools and really one of those areas and same with Indigenous students and with students in rural areas,” Roots said, “I think it doesn’t have as much of a direct impact on students as I think it could and maybe should be.”

Roots has been described as a force of nature. She is committed and passionate in everything she does. She works hard to get her voice heard, and her persistent fighting for things she believes in is exceptionally inspiring.

“She doesn’t accept anything but excellence, and she makes others around her more excellent because that… that is infectious,” Head Speech Coach Joseph Kalka said. “Ava could do anything and it would not surprise me. I truly believe she could accomplish anything she puts her mind to,” Senior Speech and Debate Captain Kyra Kellogg added.

She doesn’t accept anything but excellence and she makes others around her more excellent because that… that is infectious.”

— Joesph Kalka

When Roots gets older, she wants to work in policy. Policy is significant to her and something she is interested in. Young people having an impact on things that will affect them is imperative. Another initiative she finds crucial is enriching the Increasing Teachers of Color Act‘ to bring in representation or even a voice that speaks to these underrepresented groups.

“I think if students are interested in policy, or just having an impact and the things that are going to impact them back. I think reaching out to legislators is something that seems kind of scary, but they don’t bite. I think it’s something that students should do because all of these policies are going to impact us. So we should have a voice in that room as well,” Roots said.

Although this award serves as a great honor, Roots earns her recognition through determination and commitment. Her accomplishments are notable and inspiring. The future looks bright for Roots.