Just last week, Biotech's guidance counselor called down six students to the guidance suite to proudly congratulate them on achieving the National Merit Scholarship! These students include Vincent Accettola, Jonathan Chernov, Janna Qiao, Stephen Hackler, Ashley Dinkel, and Daniel Garton.
What is the National Merit Scholarship?
The National Merit Scholarship Program is sponsored by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation, which has been recognizing academically astute students since 1955.
To enter the program, high school students across America must take the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMQST) no later than their junior year. Of the average 1.5 million entrants, 50,000 students with the highest index scores out of 240 (Critical Reading, Mathematics, and Writing) qualify for recognition. In September of the following year, 34,000 of the 50,000 receive Letters of Commendation in recognition of their achievements but cannot move onto the Semifinalist Round. The remaining 16,000 become Semifinalists. In February, 15,000 are notified that they have moved onto the Finalists round.
According to the NMSC website, "all winners of Merit Scholarship® awards are chosen from the Finalist group, based on their abilities, skills, and accomplishments–without regard to gender, race, ethnic origin, or religious preference. A variety of information is available for NMSC selectors to evaluate: the Finalist's academic record, information about the school's curricula and grading system, two sets of test scores, the high school official's written recommendation, information about the student's activities and leadership, and the Finalist's own essay."
In its short history, Biotech has boasted over dozens of students who have achieved Letters of Commendation, the Semifinalist Round, and clearly, the Finalist Round. These 6 students have met a great accomplishment in competing with 1.5 million other entrants to earn the National Merit Scholarship.
Congratulations again to Vincent Accettola, Jonathan Chernov, Janna Qiao, Stephen Hackler, Ashley Dinkel, and Daniel Garton for their mighty accomplishment!
For more information, read the National Merit Scholarship Corporation's website at http://www.nationalmerit.org/.
By Stacey Damito