Dominique Rogers, of Duarte was awarded a Silver Medal at the national finals of the (ACT-SO) Afro Academic Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics for African-American Youth competition held July 5-8 in conjunction with the NAACP's 103rd convention in Houston, Texas. Rogers won her medal in the Humanities category, Original Essay section of the competition. She was also awarded a new I-Pad and a check for $1,500.
More than 9,000 students from 30 states competed in 110 local NAACP ACT-SO competitions. Of those, 550 local Gold medalists advanced to compete in the national finals.
"I feel blessed beyond measure because I am part of something beautiful. I know God is smiling down on me right now because I have truly put my heart into something," said Rogers.
Rogers, who was born in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands moved with her parents to Duarte when she was in the second grade. She attended Royal Oaks, Northview Intermediate, and graduated last month from Duarte High School. She will enter Cal State Fullerton in the fall and is a member of the Duarte Mayor's Youth Council.
Last April, Rogers was one of four Duarte students to win Gold medals in the local ACT-SO competition sponsored by the Pasadena branch of the NAACP. Phillip Glover, Abryanna Howard, and Tylen Kelly also traveled to Houston to compete in the national finals. In addition, the Duarte contingent included seven other Duarte youths who went along to learn about the NAACP Youth Council program with the goal of starting a branch of the Youth Program at the Duarte Teen Center.
This was only the second year that the Pasadena branch of the NAACP has competed in ACT-SO, both times with in-kind and co-sponsorship support from the City of Duarte. Southern California Edison was the primary financial sponsor. Duarte Teen Center Director, Marilyn Mays chaired the Pasadena branch competition with co-chairs Duarte Deputy City Manager, Karen Herrera, Duarte Public Safety Crime Prevention Specialist, Aida Torres and former Duarte Mayor, Lois Gaston.
The NAACP's Afro-Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics is a yearlong achievement program designed to recruit, stimulate, and encourage high academic and cultural achievement among African-American high school students. ACT-SO includes 26 categories of competition in the sciences, humanities, business, and performing and visual arts. More than 260,000 young people have participated from the program since its inception.