The 2011 National Merit semifinalists have been announced by the National Merit Scholarship Program (NMSP), a nonprofit organization dedicated to commending the academic accomplishments of high school juniors throughout the country.
Students who took the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) in 2009, about 1.5 million, were automatically entered into the contest. Less than 1 percent of students who take the exam qualify to be semifinalists.
This year, Harker has 37 senior semifinalists: Samir Asthana, Roshni Bhatnagar, Benjamin Chen, Josephine Chen, Richard Chiou, Karthik Dhore, Nikunj Donde, Hassaan Ebrahim, Rachel Fang, Nidhi Gandhi, Ejaz Haque, Ashtyn Ka, Gautam Krishnamurthi, Arthi Kumar, Max Lan, Victoria Liang, Justin Liu, Alice Loofbourrow, April Luo, Isaac Madan, Zachary Mank, Nilesh Murali, Shreya Nathan, Jasmine Nee, Nikhil Parthasarathy, Dawn Queen, Jerry Sun, Benjamin Tien, Brianna Tran, Kevin Tran, Susan Tu, Kiran Vodrahalli, Julian Wise, Erica Woolsey, David Wu, Jason Young and Olivia Zhu.
In order to become finalists, students must maintain excellent academic standing throughout their high school careers, receive an endorsement from their high school’s principal and receive SAT scores that reflect their level of performance on the PSAT/NMSQT.
Winners will receive one of three types of scholarships: one of 2,500 National Merit $2,500 scholarships, one of 1,000 corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards from approximately 250 corporations, or one of 4,900 college-sponsored awards financed by about 200 colleges and universities.