Three Phoenix-area high schoolers named Presidential Scholars

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Lana Mohamed, a senior at Centennial High School in Peoria, will receive her Presidential Scholar medallion from the White House in June. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Lana Mohamed, a senior at Centennial High School in Peoria, will receive her Presidential Scholar medallion from the White House in June. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(3TV/CBS 5) -

Three Phoenix-area high school students will be getting a big honor from The White House next month. Each of them is a Presidential Scholar, putting them in pretty elite company across the country -- there are only 161 each year.

Lana Mohamed is the first Arizona student to get the recognition for Career and Technical Education (CTE).

“It was amazing, it was insane, it was very surreal," she said of the moment she found out via Twitter that the U.S. Department of Education named her a Presidential Scholar.

“I have never really gotten anything on the national level," she said. "So I’ve reached some pinnacles on the state level, so just to reach something on the national level felt very humbling.”

A White House commission handpicks the scholars based on essays, grades, artistic excellence, community service and more. Mohamed has spent her time in high school on what is basically an early track to her dream career of global management. Her time with Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) and her dual-enrollment classes have put her well into her college career even before high school graduation.

"I think my dream is at some point to reach the United Nations and find ways to empower people of the world,” she said.

She’s fluent in Arabic and is learning Spanish. As one of just 20 CTE recipients of the honor around the country, Mohamed is a trailblazer who will get to meet the President later this summer. She and her family will be in Washington, D.C. to receive her medallion from June 24-26.

"All you have to do is just kind of be who you are and follow your dreams, and naturally people will kind of see that passion," she said.

Before starting college at ASU, this presidential scholar still has one more national FBLA competition in Baltimore this summer.

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