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Science Hill has eight students earn National Merit Semifinalist distinction

Science Hill has eight students earn National Merit Semifinalist distinction

Science Hill High School is excited to announce that eight students have earned the honor of being named a National Merit Semifinalist on Wednesday. These students are a part of the 69th annual National Merit Scholarship Program and are among more than 16,000 semifinalists, nationwide. The nationwide pool of semifinalists represents less than one percent of high school seniors in the United States.

The students who earned this honor include Allen Feng (son of Minxia Lu and Wenlai Feng), Owen Hoover (son of Heather and Randy Hoover), Shiven Jain (son of Vinay and Rekha Jain), Amanda Noe (daughter of Renee and Chris Noe), Aarushi Raj (daughter of Shruti Chaudhary and Anurag Raj), Sophia Stone (daughter of Hongson Yang and William Stone), Dakota Ward (daughter of Lisa and Luther Ward), and Selena Wheeler (daughter of Yurong and Guy Wheeler).


"Today, we celebrate the outstanding achievement of eight of our exceptional students who have reached the National Merit Semifinalist status,” Science Hill Principal Dr. Josh Carter said. “This accomplishment is a testament to their unwavering dedication and commitment to academic excellence. These students have not only demonstrated their exceptional talent but have also exemplified the values of hard work and perseverance that we hold dear in our school community. I am very proud of their accomplishments, and I have no doubt that they will continue to shine brightly as they pursue their dreams and make a positive impact on the world.”


The nationwide pool of semifinalists includes the highest-scoring entrants in each state. The number of semifinalists in a state is proportional to the state’s percentage of the national total of graduating seniors. More than 1.3 million juniors in about 21,000 high schools entered the 2023 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2022 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT), which serves as an initial screen program entrant. About 95 percent of the semifinalists will win a National Merit Scholarship, earning the Merit Scholar title.


To become a Finalist, the Semifinalist and a high school official must submit a detailed scholarship application, in which they provide information about the Semifinalist's academic record, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment, and honors and awards received. A Semifinalist must have an outstanding academic record throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by a high school official, write an essay, and earn SAT or ACT scores that confirm the student's earlier performance on the qualifying test.


From over 16,000 Semifinalists, more than 15,000 are expected to advance to the Finalist level, and in February they will be notified of this designation. All National Merit Scholarship winners will be selected from this group of Finalists. Merit Scholar designees are selected on the basis of their skills, accomplishments, and potential for success in rigorous college studies, without regard to gender, race, ethnic origin, or religious preference.


National Merit Scholarship winners of 2024 will be announced in four nationwide news releases beginning in April and concluding in July. These scholarship recipients will join nearly 375,000 other distinguished young people who have earned the Merit Scholar title.


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