Superintendent of Schools Dr. Brian V. Hightower exclaimed, Congratulations to these extraordinary students, their families and their teachers! We are proud of your continued academic achievement on the path to college and career success. Our Merit Scholar semi-finalists are known for their accomplishments in the classroom and through extra-curricular and community activities, and we look forward to seeing them progress through this process and, we hope, to earning scholarships!
The National Merit Scholarship Corporation, which oversees the prestigious competition, has named 16,000 semi-finalists, who were selected from a pool of 1.6 million students, based on outstanding 2016 PSAT scores. Less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors are named semi-finalists.
To be considered as a finalist, the students will now have to submit a detailed application, noting their academic achievements, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment, and honors; an endorsement and recommendation from a high school official; and an essay. Students also must earn SAT scores that confirm their PSAT performance.
The anticipated 15,000 finalists will compete for 7,500 scholarships worth about $32 million, which will be awarded in the spring.