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Soroptimists to put on pageant
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The Distinguished Young Women Program, a scholarship program for young ladies who are high school juniors and who reside in Ceres (or 95351 zip code), is being offered for the first time.

Soroptimist International of Ceres is offering the program, aimed at improving the lives of young women in Ceres by providing a transformative experience that promotes and rewards scholarship, leadership and talent.

"The goal of Distinguished Young Women is to encourage young women to believe in themselves so they can reach their highest potential," said Jennifer Rossi, the committee chair. "We are really excited about bringing a program to Ceres that will positively benefit young ladies, while bringing together the schools, service organizations and the community as well."

The Ceres club has received sponsorships from generous companies and service organizations in Ceres, as well as residents who wanted to make a positive impact on young ladies.

The program involves a panel of three scholars, counselors, and others familiar with high school transcript evaluation to review and score a participant's high school academic record and test scores. Judges will then evaluate personality, ability to relate to others, maturity, and ability to express herself during a 10-minute interview.

Participants will also be judged on overall physical stamina, coordination, agility, and flexibility during a choreographed group aerobic routine.

Judges evaluate a participant's performing arts talent during a 90-second stage presentation before an audience. Judges look for technical ability, appropriateness of selection, stage presence, and execution.

Judges evaluate a participant's grace, poise, demeanor, carriage and posture, and public speaking ability.
A participant will be rewarded for going above and beyond in the area of community service.

Voted on by the participants, this scholarship is presented to the young lady whom the participants feel best exemplifies the characteristics of a Distinguished Young Woman.

There are no fees to enter the program but participants must be maintaining a grade point average of 2.5 or higher, never married nor pregnant and a U.S. citizen.

A parent/participant informational meeting is set for 5:30 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 4 in the Cesar Chavez Junior High Multipurpose Room. The program will be held on Saturday, March 1 at 6 p.m. in the Ceres High School auditorium.

Information on the program is available at or at or by emailing