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DPS Honors Two Gates Scholars


At a time when most high school seniors are worrying about paying for the next phase of their education, two DPS seniors have earned a prestigious national scholarship that provides a full ride through college.

Khayln Miller (Thurgood Marshall STEM High School) and Ja’Laquan Mitchell (Dunbar Early College High School) are two of just 1,000 students nationwide to be named as a Gates Millennium Scholar. They bring the district’s total number of recipients to 22, since the program began in 2000.

As part of this select group, Miller and Mitchell win full college tuition, covering undergraduate and graduate studies. Now in its 16th year, the Gates Millennium Scholar program was established by Bill and Melinda Gates to provide outstanding minority students with the financial backing to complete an undergraduate college education as well as attaining advanced degrees.

Both Miller and Mitchell have attended Dayton Public Schools since kindergarten.

“These two young scholars are proof that when parents actively engage with their children and staff members hold students to high expectations, success happens,” DPS Superintendent Lori Ward said. “We are so very proud of these young men. Their talents and commitment are firmly established, and this scholarship will give them the means to focus on achieving even greater successes.”

Miller, son of Marchia Miller Jones, was one of two DPS participants last year in a prestigious Ivy League summer program at Princeton University. He is a member of the 2665 Cougarbot robotics team, which has competed on the national level. He is class valedictorian, with a grade point average of 4.5, and takes college-level math and chemistry. While is still finalizing his college of choice, he plans to major in engineering.

Mitchell, son of Dalisa Mitchell, is the first Dunbar ECHS senior to earn Gates Scholar status. Last month, he made district history by receiving the dual honor of being named a Coca-Cola Scholar.

The Class of 2015 valedictorian at Dunbar carries a 4.0 grade point average, and has earned 26 college credits through the school’s dual college enrollment program. Last year, Mitchell became part of the redesigned school’s inaugural class eligible to take courses at both high school and college levels, providing credit for both. Starting with online classes at Sinclair last year, he was able to complete courses at both Sinclair and the University of Dayton this school year. When he graduates from Dunbar in May, he will have 26 college credits. He will attend Dartmouth College, majoring in pre-med with a focus on anesthesiology.

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