Olathe Northwest’s Cassie Wang is not only a Presidential Scholar. She was chosen as one of the top 10 youth volunteers in the country.
By SARA BEANE
Special to The Star
Wang was one of two state winners from Kansas to be chosen for the Prudential Spirit of Community award. She, along with 101 other state winners from across the country, received a $1,000 cash prize and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C. To say that Wang was shocked to learn that she was then selected as one of the 10 national winners is an understatement.
“They did a very good job of sneaking up on me during the awards ceremony,” Wang said. “They had a big screen and there was a giant camera two feet from my face. It was a total surprise.”
The Prudential Spirit of Community Award honors middle and high school students nationwide for outstanding service to others.
Wang started the nonprofit group the Youth Hope Fund and has raised $8,000 to provide scholarships for children in China. She also provided financial assistance to victims of a devastating tornado in Joplin, Mo., by raising money through the American Junior Golf Association’s Birdies for Charity program.
As part of the award, Prudential has given Wang $5,000 that she will donate to her Youth Hope Fund organization. Wang will also receive $5,000 to use toward college, an engraved silver medallion and a crystal trophy to be displayed at Olathe Northwest High School.
She said one of the best things about winning the award was the chance to meet so many other charitable teenagers from across the country during her trip to Washington, D.C.
“They all have done so much in such a short time in their lives,” Wang said. “I can’t even imagine what the world would be if all the kids in this country were like the other participants.”