Approximately 16,000 U.S. high school seniors were announced as semifinalists in the 62nd annual National Merit Scholarship Program. Leavenworth High School’s class of 2017 boasts three finalists: Abigail Ko, Rebecca Hollister, and Summer McCowen.
“Having one National Merit Scholar semifinalist in a given year is a big deal, but three semifinalists from one class is truly phenomenal. The entire Leavenworth school district is extremely proud of these students, and we applaud their hard work and commitment to academic excellence throughout the years,” said Superintendent Mike Roth.
As juniors, Hollister, Ko and McCowen took the Preliminary SAT National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test and received scores high enough to rank nationally as the top 1 percent of high school seniors.
Their names will be added to the 21st Century Scholars and Leaders Board – a permanent display on Leavenworth High School’s Main Street – in recognition of outstanding student achievement.
Hollister had previously earned a spot on the wall for attaining a perfect 36 ACT score as a junior.
“Our graduating class has some of the greatest people. We all want to be the best at everything, not just academics. We are intelligent and work hard. I am actually surprised there were only three of us, there definitely could have been more,” Hollister said.
National Merit semifinalists will now continue in competition for some 7,500 National Merit Scholarships worth nearly $33 million to be offered in the spring.
Semifinalists must fulfill several requirements and submit a detailed application to advance to the finalist level of competition. Eligible finalists must demonstrate an outstanding academic record, be recommended by a high school official, write an essay and earn SAT scores that confirm earlier performance on the qualifying test.
National Merit Scholarship winners of 2017 will be announced in a series of awards, beginning in April and concluding in July.
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