Three seniors from The Bear Creek School were recently named semifinalists in the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Program. The three semifinalists are seniors Rita Luk, Lauren Shen and Nelson Shun. Seniors Andrew Hom and Matthew Jensen were recognized as national commended students.
The three students are among about 16,000 high school students nationally who made the semifinal list in the 65th annual National Merit scholarship program.
According to a press release, the seniors have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,600 National Merit scholarships worth more than $31 million that will be offered next spring.
To be considered for a scholarship award, semifinalists must fulfill several requirements to advance to the finalist level of the competition. More than 90 percent of the semifinalists are expected to attain finalist standing and about half of the finalists will win a scholarship, the release states.
More than 1.5 million juniors in about 21,000 high schools entered the National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2018 preliminary SAT/National Merit scholarship qualifying test, according to the release. The nationwide pool of semifinalists, representing less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors, includes the highest scoring entrants in each state. Merit scholar finalists will be selected based on their skills, accomplishments and potential for success in rigorous college studies
Three types of National Merit scholarships will be offered in spring 2020. Every finalist will compete for one of 2,500 National Merit $2,500 scholarships that will be awarded on a state-representational basis, the release states. About 1,000 corporate-sponsored scholarship awards will be provided by about 220 corporations and business organizations for finalists who meet their specified criteria, according to the release.
In addition, about 180 colleges and universities are expected to finance some 4,100 college-sponsored scholarship awards for finalists who will attend the sponsor institution.
National Merit Scholarship winners of 2020 will be announced beginning in April and concluding in July.