Caitlin Borke of Alpena has been named the first runner-up to the Distinguished Young Woman of Michigan. The 56th Distinguished Young Women of Michigan Scholarship Program (formally Michigan's Junior Miss) was held recently at Saline High School.
Borke received a $1,650 college scholarship and was also named as a Top Talent winner along with a Top Interview winner and Top Self-Expression Winner. She performed a vocal and piano piece to the song, "Hallelujah" by Leonard Cohen.
Borke attends Alpena High School and plans to further her education at Western Michigan University, where she will study secondary music education. The 2013 Miss Sunrise Side Pageant winner, she is the daughter of Vlinda and Ronald Borke of Hubbard Lake.
Seventeen contestants from around the state of Michigan competed and were awarded a total of $8,000 in college scholarships. Alysse Blight of Wyandotte was selected as the Distinguished Young Woman of Michigan 2014. As such, she received a total of $2,650 in cash scholarships. She was also announced as a Talent Award winner, a Physical Fitness Award winner and the Spirit of Distinguished Young Woman Award winner.
Blight will represent Michigan at the Distinguished Young Woman of America Scholarship Program in Mobile, Ala. in June.
Cassidy Nugent, the Distinguished Young Woman of Washtenaw County, was announced as the second runner-up and received $1,050 in college scholarships. Kayla Fryz, the Distinguished Young Woman of Plymouth-Canton, was announced as third runner up and received $850 college scholarship, and the fourth runner-up was Akshaya Rajkumar, the Distinguished Young Woman of Oakland County. She was awarded $850. Ashley Peper, the Distinguished Young Woman of Northville, received a $250 Scholastics Award and Chineze Mbanugo, the Distinguished Young Woman of Canton, received a $250 Be Your Best Self Community Service Essay sponsored by the Brooklyn Kiwanis Club.
The Distinguished Young Women of Michigan Scholarship Program awards college scholarships to young women who have distinguished themselves at school and in their communities. Contestants are high school seniors from around the state of Michigan who compete in areas of scholastics, physical fitness, performing arts talent, private interview and on stage question.
It is part of the Distinguished Young Women of America, which is the largest and oldest scholarship program for high school seniors in the country. Since the scholarships program first began in 1958, over $90 million dollars in college scholarships have been awarded.
National sponsors are Alabama Power, Encore Rehabilitation, Regions Bank, Barbara Barrington Jones Family Foundation, Sirote Supports and the city and county of Mobile, Ala. More information on this scholarship program is available at www.distinguishedyw.org.