Each year, a committee of alumni representing the Alumni Association selects a member of the Junior Class to receive the Robert U. Ricklefs Scholar Award—the highest non-academic award an 11th grader can receive. This year, the committee chose to give the award to junior Clea Caddell.
The Ricklefs Scholar Award recognizes a student who has distinguished his or herself in important ways. Candidates are considered on the basis of: academic standing, interest in leadership at the School or local community, and involvement in extracurricular activities. Finalists for the award are first selected based on a vote taken by the junior class and RLS faculty. Then, the chosen finalists are asked to submit a resume, transcript, and an essay on a topic chosen by the selection committee, and also to participate in an interview in the spring.
Clea was chosen for the Award based on her academic and extracurricular excellence. Not only is she a mathlete and a standout mock trial lawyer with a rigorous Stevenson course load, but she is also a world-class equestrian. In addition to her curricular and extracurricular endeavors, Clea takes time to tutor students in reading via the national non-profit, Learn to Be. She has developed a passion for service and for advocating for those who are less fortunate than her, and someday, she aspires to work as an attorney for the ACLU.
Faculty members who nominated Clea for the award describe her as both impressively capable and incredibly generous. They say that she is a consistently supportive classmate and friend, and that her generosity shines through in her tutoring work, as well as her consideration for her peers and School community.
The Ricklefs Scholar Award is ultimately an attempt to maintain a sense of connection between current students and alums: the students of Stevenson’s past. Mr. Ricklefs’ initial vision for the School was shaped around several important principles, including hard work, excellence in scholarship and citizenship, and belief in community. Clea is certainly an RLS student who embodies the ideals upon which the legacy of the School is based.
Congratulations to Clea and all of the junior students who were selected as finalists for the Ricklefs Scholar Award this year! We are so proud of all that you have achieved.