Orono High School students who have been recognized by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation are,
from left: front – Rebecca Young and Sara Vickerman. Back row – Andrew Ten Eyck, Carson Miller, Keith
Ketola and Paul Newswanger. Allan Luedeman is not pictured.
Two Orono High School students have been designated as semifinalists in the 2014
National Merit Scholarship Program. An additional five OHS students achieved commended status.
The semifinalists are: Paul Newswanger, son of Rick and Meg Newswanger, Maple Plain; and Rebecca Young, daughter of Scott and Mary Young, Wayzata.
The five commended students are Keith Ketola, Allan Luedeman, Carson Miller, Andrew Ten Eyck and Sara Vickerman.
All of the students will be honored by the Orono School Board at its meeting Tuesday, November 12.
Approximately 1.5 million students in more than 22,000 high schools entered this year’s competition by taking the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test as juniors.
The nationwide pool of semifinalists represents less than 1 percent of high school seniors in the United States.
From the 16,000 semifinalists, about 15,000 are expected to advance to the finalist level and be eligible to compete for some 8,000 scholarships worth $35 million.
To become a finalist, a semifinalist must have an outstanding academic record throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by his/her school principal and earn SAT scores that confirm earlier test performance. A self-descriptive essay and information about the semifinalist’s participation and leadership in school and community activities is also considered.
Three types of awards will be offered in 2014. Every finalist will compete for one of 2,500 National Merit $2,500 scholarships to be awarded on a state representational basis.
In addition, some 240 corporations and business organizations will underwrite about 1,000 corporate-sponsored scholarships for finalists who meet their specified criteria.
About 200 colleges and universities will finance some 4,500 awards for finalists who will attend the sponsor institution.
Merit Scholarship winners will be announced in four installments between April and July. These recipients will join more than 300,000 other distinguished young people who have earned the Merit Scholar title.
Some 34,000 commended students throughout the nation are being recognized for their exceptional academic promise. Although they will not continue in the 2014 competition, commended students placed among the top 5 percent of students taking the qualifying exam.