APS Community Connection

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April 6, 2015
In this issue. . .

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Rangeview Senior Earns Boettcher Scholarship, Hailed as One of Colorado’s Best and Brightest
Boettcher Scholar Anna Phan

Boettcher Scholar Anna Phan

Rangeview High School senior Anna Phan is unapologetically ambitious, ending her high school career with a bang. In addition to earning a spot as one of Rangeview’s Class of 2015 top ten graduates, the first-generation graduate-to-be scored the official title of a 2015 Boettcher Scholar! The Boettcher Scholarship is lauded as the most prestigious merit-based scholarship available to Colorado seniors.

On behalf of the Boettcher Foundation, Phan will enjoy her undergraduate study of Neuroscience at Colorado State University for free. The scholarship honors Phan for her academic excellence, leadership skills, community service and noble character. She is one of only 40 students who endured an intense application and interview process and made the cut. More than 1,600 students applied.

“I was checking my mail every day and received the letter the day after my birthday! It was a great birthday present,” said Phan. “The first person I told was my mom. We hugged and cried.”

Phan credits some of her success to her theater teacher Tammy Strouse.

“Mrs. Strouse helped me not only as a student, but as a person in general,” Phan shared. “She pushes me to be someone who strives for the best. I also think theater helped me stay on top of a lot of things. It’s something I really love to do.”

Aside from her involvement in theater, Phan is a dedicated member of many student organizations, including Sisters in the Community. The young ladies gather to volunteer their time and talents in many ways.

“Join everything that interests you,” Phan advises other students looking to reach new heights. “It’s where you discover a lot about yourself and it’s great to do that in an environment where you’re free to learn from your mistakes and grow.”

APS is proud of Phan and wishes her success in all of her future endeavors.  

For more exciting news about APS scholarship recipients and opportunities, visit aurorak12.org/students/scholarships/.

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Hats off to the 2015 APS Class of Daniels Scholars!
Aurora Central High School students and Daniels Scholars Marcos Aguilar and Shirley Tun-Verde

Aurora Central High School students and Daniels Scholars Marcos Aguilar and Shirley Tun-Verde

Aurora Public Schools is pleased to announce that nine APS seniors were recently named Daniels Scholars. This prestigious scholarship program honors students who exemplify the character of distinguished business leader Bill Daniels—solid leadership skills, academic excellence and humanitarianism.

Becoming a Daniels Scholar involves a highly-competitive and rigorous application and interview process. Thousands of students across Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming pursue acceptance into the Daniels Scholarship Program, which not only covers unmet financial needs, but also supports students throughout their undergraduate college careers in numerous ways.

Congratulations to the following 2015 Daniels Scholars!

Aurora Central High School
Marcos Aguilar
Shirley Tun-Verde

Aurora West College Preparatory Academy
Sarah Daniels

Gateway High School
Ontario Duley
Elshaddai Mulugeta

Hinkley High School
Victor Mendez
Oscar Briones Ruiz
Salina Tesfay

Rangeview High School
Juwan Harris

For more exciting news about APS scholarship recipients and opportunities, visit aurorak12.org/students/scholarships/.

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APS School Capacity Planning Open Houses

Due to enrollment growth, Aurora Public Schools is experiencing capacity challenges at several schools throughout the district. Student enrollment is projected to increase by two percent annually over the next three years, requiring an action plan to ensure that APS continues to meet student needs.

APS is seeking community feedback on a variety of options to address school overcrowding, such as funding new construction, increasing class size, changing high school schedules, and implementing year-round school calendars. The APS Board of Education will consider this input in adopting strategies for a Facilities Support Plan for the 2016-17 and 2017-18 school years.

School capacity options will be presented to the community in a series of open houses. We invite you to attend one of the open houses listed below:



  • View displays and learn about the benefits and challenges of each option.
  • Talk one-on-one with APS staff members.
  • Provide input on the school capacity options.

Spanish interpretation will be provided.

Learn more at suppsvcs.aurorak12.org/capacity/ .

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Aurora Central's Dena Joslyn-Custer Earns Prestigious Service Award

Dena Joslyn-Custer

Aurora Central High School staff member Dena Joslyn-Custer is a dedicated professional who values helping those who may not know how to help themselves. Her work with exceptional students has made her a go-to resource in the field, and she recently earned the 2014 Joe Todd Annual Service Award from the Colorado Council for Exceptional Children. The award recognizes an education professional or paraprofessional who has contributed outstanding service for exceptional children in Colorado.

Congratulations, Dena on your outstanding award! Thank you for your service to APS students.

I love seeing how students can thrive and grow into productive young adults through the work I do with them. Social work practice in the schools is an essential component to ensuring student success.  My job is to address the social and psychological barriers that can block academic progress.  Through collaboration with families, community systems and crisis intervention ... our students can overcome the barriers to their academic success, and as a result, give themselves a better chance to succeed in school and in life.

- Dena Joslyn-Custer

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Si usted habla español y desea una explicación de esta conexión comunitaria, por favor comuníquese al número
303-344-8060 x28078.

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APS Community ConnectionAPS Community Connection is produced by the Aurora Public Schools' Communication Department. Content focuses on timely and important information about the school district. Please share this information with your community. For more information please call the APS Communication Department at 303-365-7805.

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Created on November 10th, 2014 | Last updated on April 6, 2015