Abbie Vollmer, a sophomore at Washington High School, is one of 100 award recipients for the third year of PBS’s and Stand Up to Cancer’s Emperor Science Award program.

The program is designed to empower high school students to become the next generation of scientists as they explore careers in cancer research and care through a unique mentoring opportunity.

PBS and Stand Up to Cancer, a division of the Entertainment Industry Foundation, received nearly 600 applications from eligible 10th- and 11th-grade students in 28 states throughout the U.S. who are interested in pursuing a career in science research.

Prominent scientists served as judges and evaluated the students’ applications: written essays submitted online this fall, addressing how cancer has affected them or their communities; how science can help find a cure for cancer; and, if they are able to become cancer researchers, what scientific fields would they study and why.

Vollmer was selected as one of 100 high school students from across the U.S. awarded for their passionate essays detailing the need to find a cure for cancer.

“We are so proud of Abbie for winning this science award,” said Washington High School Principal Dr. Kelle McCallum.

“She is a deserving candidate and an example of the great students we have at our school,” she said. “We look forward to hearing about the research she will get to be involved with at the university level. Abbie will represent our school and the entire Washington community as she continues to enhance her knowledge and skills through this mentorship program.”

The 100 Emperor Science Award recipients will work with an esteemed university scientist on a rewarding multi-week cancer research project, receive a Google Chromebook computer to enhance their studies and to facilitate mentor access for those students who live at a distance from their mentor’s research facility, and a $1,500 stipend for expenses.

Those entering the program for the first year also will have the opportunity to apply for a second year.

Vollmer plays the tuba in the WHS band and is involved in many different clubs, including the Rotary Interact Service Club, Science Club and Renaissance. She was the school’s representative for a poetry competition in St. Charles and is a co-chair for the upcoming spring blood drive at WHS.

Vollmer hopes to become the first doctor in her family and wants to study medical research.

She is the daughter of Rodney and Cherie Vollmer.