This year’s recipient of The Bob & Marilyn Ridgley Civics Learning Project Scholarship is Butch Nasser. Butch is a 2021 valedictorian from Southridge High School in Beaverton and has been interested in the law since he was a child. That interest led him to join his school’s Mock Trial team as a sophomore. As co-captain, Butch helped lead Southridge’s team to the Oregon State Championship and the National High School Mock Trial Competition his senior year.
Mock Trial grew Butch’s quick-thinking skills and helped him feel at ease in a variety of situations and environments. In addition to law, Butch enjoys his favorite hobbies: mastering tabletop games, playing online video games with his friends, fiddling on the trumpet, or satiating his addiction to reading. Butch attends Stanford University and plans to focus on Electrical Engineering. The Ridgleys and Civics Learning Project are proud to support Butch in achieving his goals. Congratulations, Butch!
Tell us about your experience with Civics Learning Project.
I started participating in Mock Trial Sophomore year and was co-captain Junior and Senior year. Senior year, even with the COVID-19 pandemic and virtual Trials, we exited as state champions and advanced to the National High School Mock Trial Championship. It was an amazing experience in teamwork, self-sufficiency, and adapting to the unknown.
Where are you currently/planning to study?
I attend Stanford University, planning to take courses in Electrical Engineering and Law.
How did your experiences with CLP as a student encourage this path?
I’ve always considered studying Law, but my time with Mock Trial has encouraged me to explore it even further than I probably would have. I wanted to attend Stanford for its diverse options concerning Law, and even other majors as I dip into the waters to find the path for me.
How did the skills you learned through Mock Trial help you prepare for your first term of college?
I definitely intend to participate in Stanford’s Mock Trial program. Besides that, Mock Trial’s lessons in adapting to new challenges on the spot, as well as careful preparation and precise dedication to a craft, will be helpful as I step into a new place and sector of my life.
How has winning the Ridgley Scholarship affected you and your family’s lives?
I was on the verge of tears when I was surprised with the Ridgley Scholarship on my senior awards night. With it, I can attend Stanford without having to worry about working the entire school year, and I can focus on my studies and supporting my family. As for the rest of my family, they can’t enter my room without seeing the giant check hanging above my bed! I am so grateful for the opportunities Civics Learning Project and the Ridgleys have allowed me to pursue as a result of the Scholarship.
What’s your favorite thing about CLP?
Civics Learning Project goes all out for its students; From getting real attorneys to coach, and real judges to judge, from even getting Judge Simon to coach the state championships, it’s amazing how much effort they put in to give an authentic and meaningful experience, and I appreciate the connections I have made.
What do you have coming up in the new year/ next semester?
Stanford will be in person this year, and I’m so excited to move down into my dorm come September. This first quarter, I’m most looking forward to a creative writing/story analysis course, which includes both movies and novels. I can’t wait for my time at Stanford to start!