Show-Me Scholars is a statewide Missouri Chamber program that brings employers into classrooms to motivate students to make the most of their time in high school.

Thirty of Chillicothe’s graduating high school seniors have earned “Show-Me Scholars” honors by fulfilling a pledge to take more rigorous classes during high school.

Locally facilitated by the Chillicothe Area Chamber of Commerce in partnership with local businesses, Show-Me Scholars is a statewide Missouri Chamber program that brings employers into classrooms to motivate students to make the most of their time in high school by taking a challenging course of study. Throughout their high school years, students receive encouragement from business mentors to stay on track. The program is part of the workforce development goals of Missouri 2030, the Missouri Chamber’s strategic initiative to make the state an economic leader.

“Through the Show-Me Scholars curriculum, these hardworking, dedicated students have developed the strong educational foundation they will need to be successful in the job opportunities of today and tomorrow. We are proud of their achievements thus far and expect to see great things from them in the future,” said Daniel P. Mehan, Missouri Chamber president and CEO.

At Chillicothe High School senior scholarship ceremony on May 3, the Chillicothe Area Chamber awarded local scholarships to two Show-Me Scholars seniors, Maggie Pfaff and Cade Koehly.

Show-Me Scholars seniors across Missouri also compete for state level Missouri Chamber scholarships. Kaylee Lewis earned one of these $1,000 scholarships.

“A core component of State Farm philanthropy programs is building pathways to college and career success,” said State Farm spokesperson Kevin Gamble. “State Farm is proud to support the Show-Me Scholars program and celebrates the success of these dedicated students.”

Lewis said she plans to study biochemistry at the University of Missouri – Columbia.

“I’d really like to be a rural pediatric physician,” said Lewis. “My main reason for wanting to do that is that there’s been a lack of healthcare professionals — especially for children — in rural areas, and that’s something I’m pretty passionate about…I’m grateful for everything everyone has given to me and I will definitely use it to further my education. I’m super excited.”

A long-term study by the U.S. Department of Education showed that the course of study students take is a more accurate predictor of success than grades, test scores or class rank, particularly for minority students. In addition to advanced academic studies, the program requires students to participate in community service efforts, uphold attendance requirements and abide by the Missouri Safe Schools Act.