Toyota Awards US$1 Million in Scholarships to 100 High School Seniors
World School's Khan named one of only 12 'national' winners; receives US$20,000
Sahar Khan, a senior at ABA-An IB World School, is at the head of an exclusive class. Khan was one of only 12 seniors nationwide to be named a "national" Toyota Community Scholar. That's quite an accomplishment when you consider that more than 8,000 seniors from across the country were nominated by their schools.
The Scholars program, now in its 13th year, honors the top 100 students in the U.S. who are proven leaders, both in the classroom and in the communities in which they live and serve. The winners were awarded a combined total of US$1 million in college scholarships recently by Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. (TMS). The scholarships are valued at US$20,000 (for national winners like Khan) or US$10,000 each, over four years, for study at a four-year college or university starting in the fall of 2009.
Since the Toyota Community Scholars program began in 1997, TMS has awarded over US$14 million in scholarships to 1,300 students across the U.S.
The judges who chose the 2009 Toyota Community Scholars' class were impressed with the many volunteer projects in which Khan has participated, particularly her role as a founding member of the Afghan Relief Association (ARA), which raises awareness and funds within the school community for educational facilities catering to girls in Afghanistan.
As President of ARA, Khan is the liaison to the Afghani Embassy to Oman, organizing awareness campaigns and delivering speeches at various fundraisers.
"The Afghan Relief Association has taught me that if I espouse a genuine cause and compel people, they are much too compassionate to ignore it and will identify with human plight regardless of national allegiances," says the Scholar.
Inspired by her grandmother, who fought for the right to be educated, Khan is also a member of Students Against Prejudice, High School Student Council and Amnesty International.
Her goal is to continue serving the area of education in Afghanistan by developing a network of schools in the region.
Khan is a perfect example of what the Toyota Community Scholars program is all about.
"In these tough economic times, it is particularly rewarding to see these students having such a tremendous impact in their communities," said Michael Rouse, TMS vice president of philanthropy and community affairs. "They are stellar examples of service and commitment and remind us all what's really important."