Sept. 12, 2014

14 HPHS students named National Merit semifinalists


14 Highland Park High School seniors have been named 2015 National Merit semifinalists. The students are among 16,000 academically talented high school seniors who will continue in the National Merit Scholarship Corporation's competition for 7,600 scholarships worth $33 million that will be offered in the spring. 


"Through their ongoing commitment to learning and academic excellence, our National Merit semifinalists exemplify the profile of the student that we envision at Highland Park High School," Principal Walter Kelly said. "We are particularly proud of the context in which our students earned this honor; they are all engaged in many interests and pursuits. They balance life inside and outside the classroom in a way that makes us proud."  


Students are selected based on performance on the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. The semifinalists are among the top 1 percent of high school seniors in the U.S.
Highland Park High School's National Merit semifinalists are:
  • Claire Crofford
  • Cassandra Helfer
  • Courtney Horn
  • Isabella Jones
  • Benjamin Klimko
  • Vania Liu
  • Katherine Neely
  • Caroline Nowlin
  • Christine Ramjee
  • Vinaik Sundaresan
  • Jordan Wheeler
  • David Wiegn
  • Reid Wyde
  • Jiamin Zhou 
Nationally, approximately 15,000 of the semifinalists are expected to advance to become finalists, and it is from this group that National Merit Scholarship winners will be chosen. Merit Scholar designees are selected on the basis of their accomplishments, skills and potential for success in rigorous college studies.
Three types of Merit Scholarship awards will be offered in the spring of 2015.  Every finalist will compete for one of the National Merit $2,500 scholarships that will be awarded on a state-representational basis.
In addition, some 240 corporations and business organizations will underwrite 1,000 scholarships for finalists who meet their specified criteria, such as children of the grantor's employees or residents of communities where sponsor plants or offices are located. Also, about 200 colleges and universities are expected to finance some 4,100 Merit Scholarship awards for finalists who will attend the sponsoring institutions.

The National Merit Corporation will announce scholarship winners for 2015 in four news releases, beginning in April and concluding in July.
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