FORT WALTON BEACH — A local high school student has been chosen to attend an honors-only program in Massachusetts this summer.

Nikolas Howell, a ninth-grader at Choctawhatchee High School, will be a delegate to the Congress of Future Medical Leaders in Lowell, Massachusetts, on June 25-27. The Congress is an honors-only program for high school students who want to become physicians or go into medical research fields, according to a press release.

Howel, whol learned he was chosen for the program in early February, said he felt surprised and excited.

“The nomination gave me more determination to peruse a career in the medical field,” Howell said. “I think this event will give me more insight in medicine as well as useful resources and motivation to better understand my future in medicine.”

The purpose of the Congress is to honor, inspire, motivate and direct the top students in the country who aspire to be physicians or medical scientists to stay true to their dream and to provide a path, plan and resources to help them reach their goal, according to a press release.

Howell was nominated by Dr. Mario Capecchi, winner of the Nobel Prize in Medicine and the science director of the National Academy of Future Physicians and Medical Scientists, to represent Florida based on his academic achievement, leadership potential and determination to serve humanity.

“After completing high school, I plan to pursue a career in cardiothoracic anesthesiology,” Howell said.

During the three-day program, Howell will join students from across the country and hear Nobel laureates and National Medal of Science winners talk about leading medical research; be given advice from Ivy League and top medical school deans on what to expect in medical school; witness stories told by patients who are living medical miracles; be inspired by fellow teen medical science prodigies; and learn about cutting-edge advances and the future in medicine and medical technology, according to a press release.

“This is a crucial time in America when we need more doctors and medical scientists who are even better prepared for a future that is changing exponentially,” said Richard Rossi, executive director of National Academy of Future Physicians and Medical Scientists. “Focused, bright and determined students like Nikolas Howell are our future and he deserves all the mentoring and guidance we can give him.”

The academy offers free services and programs to students who want to be physicians or go into medical science. Some of the services and programs the academy offers are online social networks through which future doctors and medical scientists can communicate; opportunities for students to be guided and mentored by physicians and medical students; and communications for parents and students on college acceptance and finances, skills acquisition, internships, career guidance and much more.