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Kalina Named Presidential Scholar Semifinalist

Blake Kalina, son of Christopher and Carrie Kalina of Hinckley Township, has been named one of only five U.S. Presidential Scholar semifinalists for Career Technical education (CTE) in Ohio.  Kalina was recognized by Governor Mike DeWine at the Ohio Association for Career Technical Education Legislative Seminar at a ceremony on January 23. Blake and his family were in Columbus for the ceremony, where they also had the unique opportunity to receive a personal tour of the Governor’s mansion and residence. Blake is now a candidate for national recognition by the White House Commission on Presidential Scholars and the U.S. Department of Education. 

Kalina is a senior in the Public Safety program at the Medina County Career Center.  “After being involved in a major traffic accident, I was captivated by the actions of the first responders and care of the emergency room staff at the hospital. This experience piqued my interest in related medical careers,” stated Kalina. 

At the Medina County Career Center, Blake has earned his Basic Life Support and Occupational Health and Safety Certifications and completed his clinical hours at the Cleveland Clinic. He is currently working towards obtaining his EMT and Fire II credentials.

Blake is on track to graduate with honors from both Highland High School and the Medina County Career Center, and will have earned more than 40 college credits. He has also been inducted into Phi Theta Kappa, Cuyahoga Community College’s Honor Society. While he has not yet committed to a college, he plans to finish his BSN prior to advancing in the medical field. 

Blake continues to participate in Highland varsity basketball and serves as a Highland DARE Role Model and youth basketball coach.  He is a graduate of Junior Leadership Medina County and continues to impact the community through his volunteer work with a number of community organizations including Highland’s annual Safety Town.

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