Pinkerton Academy senior Ben Sands, 18, of Chester, Londonderry High School senior Laura Gardocki, 18, of Londonderry and Salem High School senior Saif Mohammed, 18, of Salem were three of the first 10 New Hampshire high school students who received scholarships through the New Hampshire Red Sox Scholarships program.

All of the Red Sox scholars of New Hampshire were recognized in a pre-game ceremony at Fenway Park May 30.

Sands will attend Cornell University to study mechanical engineering in the fall, Gardocki will head to the University of New Hampshire and plans to become a special education teacher, and Mohammed will attend Bates College to study biology and take pre-medical school courses.

Red Sox Scholarships is a new program this year for New Hampshire public school students. The 10 students were each awarded $1,000 scholarships based on their academic performance and involvement in community service.

"It's cool," Sands said of the scholarship and the Fenway celebration. "It'll be a great story to tell."

Gardocki, who was chosen from more than 40 LHS students who applied for the scholarship, e-mailed principal Jason Parent after the big day.

"When I got to Gate A, I was brought in to an office building, where I waited with the other scholarship recipients until we were all there," she wrote. "We then got brought out onto the field, where we took pictures by the Green Monster."

She said the scholarship recipients were greeted by John and Linda Henry, Larry Lucchino, Ben Cherington and other Red Sox dignitaries. The students each received a special red bat with their name engraved on it.

"Standing on the field in front of thousands of people was exhilarating and a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity," Gardocki wrote. "From there, we went up to our seats in the Executive Suite. The view was awesome!"

She also mentioned that Henry autographed her David Ortiz jersey for her and she was able to meet Gov. John Lynch.

"It was an amazing day and, to top it all off the Red Sox won," she concluded.

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