Pictured are 12 of the 13 Mercer Island High School seniors who have been named semifinalists in the National Merit Scholarship Program. Photo courtesy of the Mercer Island School District

Pictured are 12 of the 13 Mercer Island High School seniors who have been named semifinalists in the National Merit Scholarship Program. Photo courtesy of the Mercer Island School District

MIHS seniors named National Merit Scholarship Program semifinalists

  • Sunday, September 19, 2021 9:29am
  • News

Thirteen Mercer Island High School (MIHS) seniors have been named semifinalists in the 67th annual National Merit Scholarship Program.

They are: Arin Agarwal, Jasper Burkey, Kelly Cotter, Gabriel Gottesman, Ryan Huang, Benjamin Kinder, Aidan Klein, Divya Krishnaswamy, Declan McSherry, Nathan Paek, Luca Palermo, Alana Yang and Jason Zhao.

The local scholars are among approximately 16,000 semifinalists who are the highest-scoring entrants in each state on the 2020 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test.

Semifinalists have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,500 National Merit Scholarships worth nearly $30 million that will be offered next spring.

To reach finalist status and compete for the scholarships, semifinalists and a high school official must submit a detailed scholarship application featuring information about the students’ academic record, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment, and honors and awards received.

In addition to having an outstanding academic record throughout high school, students must be endorsed and recommended by a high school official, write an essay, and earn SAT or ACT scores that confirm the students’ earlier performance on the qualifying test.

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