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Windsor High senior gets full scholarship to U.Va.

Leah Carroll, a senior at Windsor High School, has been awarded one of the most highly selective merit scholarships in the nation.

Leah Carroll

The Jefferson Scholars Foundation at the University of Virginia selected Carroll as one of 38 recipients of the Jefferson Scholarship. According to U.Va’s website, the scholarship’s value exceeds $157,000 for in-state students and is intended to cover all four years of college. She will commence her studies in the fall at U.Va. in political science.

In order to be named a Jefferson Scholar, candidates must undergo a rigorous, highly competitive, multi-stage selection process. First, they are nominated by their high schools based on their demonstrated excellence and exceptional potential in the areas of leadership, scholarship and citizenship. Once nominated, the students go through at least one round of regional interviews.

If selected as a regional finalist, students are then invited to participate in a final round of interviews. This year, over 2,100 students were nominated for the Scholarship, and 125 finalists were invited to take part in remote interviews conducted by U.Va. alumni and faculty.

In addition to receiving the full cost of attending the university for four years, Jefferson Scholars benefit from a number of enrichment programs sponsored by the Foundation, including travel abroad, career networking activities, an outdoor challenge program, and a leadership speaker series.

The 38 selected recipients of the 2021 Jefferson Scholarship boast a number of significant achievements and Carroll is no exception. During her time at Windsor High School, she has served as student liaison to the School Board and captain of Windsor’s Virginia High School League Theatre and Forensics teams. She garnered numerous team victories and was recently crowned the state forensics champion in poetry.

Carroll has been recognized as a National Merit Commended Scholar, an AP Scholar, a National Rural and Small Town Scholar, and Windsor High School’s Senior of the Month for October 2020. Carroll attended various leadership academies at the local, state, and national level and successfully campaigned for a state constitutional amendment allowing citizen voices to be a larger part of Virginia’s legislative redistricting process.

She is the daughter of Bruce and Dawn Carroll.