Fairfax County School Board Selects Thomas Jefferson HS for Science and Technology Student as Recipient of 2021 Character Award

School Board
June 17, 2021

Gurleen Kaur, a 2021 graduate of Thomas Jefferson High School, has been selected as recipient of the 2021 Fairfax County School Board Character Award. 

Gurleen is recognized by nominators as a”powerful source of inspiration for the TJHSST community who is extremely intelligent, compassionate, and incredibly dedicated to nurturing the less fortunate and she devotes countless volunteer hours weekly helping others.”  

In addition to managing her rigorous academic coursework, Gurleen worked tirelessly to support others in her community. Examples include:

  • assisted in establishing a $2,000 scholarship program for low-income students; 
  • coordinated volunteers for Student Diversity Initiative/Outreach Club that hosts events throughout the year; 
  • tutored and mentored students in Learning and Inquiry Through Fellowship and Tutoring (LIFT); 
  • served as a facilitator and a camp director for Kids are Scientist Too (KAST) that encourages STEM. 
Photo of Gurleen Kaur, 2021 recipient of the School Board Character Award.
Gurleen Kaur, center, recipient of the 2021 School Board Character Award. 

Gurleen has served as the president of the Humanitarian Aid to North Korea Club; co-wrote a proposal to the School Board advocating for changes to the Advanced Academics Program (AAP) admission process; volunteered for Magic of Mothers that provides STEM opportunities to students from low-income communities; coordinated the annual STEMFest that provides fair-like STEM activities to students from over 70 elementary school students. 

According to nominators, Gurleen possesses a “positive spirit and strives to create an inclusive community.” 

The award was established by the Student Advisory Council in 2001 and is given to a junior or senior who demonstrates a continuous record of high morals, strong integrity, and good character, and who is recognized as a role model for students in Fairfax County Public Schools. The Apple Federal Credit Union Education Foundation has funded the $500 award since 2007.