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Six Seniors Tabbed as National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists

National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists Cheltenham High School can claim six of the approximately 16,000 semifinalists in the 64th annual National Merit Scholarship Program, it was announced this week. The semifinalists were selected from among more than 1.6 million juniors from about 22,000 high schools who entered the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2017 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT), which served as an initial screen of program entrants.

This year’s Panther semifinalists and where they’re looking to attend college include Roderick J. Ahrens (Carnegie Mellon, Pittsburgh), Olivia K. Kronick (Drexel, Georgia Tech); Abraham Moss (UChicago; Amherst); Sydney B. Rubin (Vermont, Tufts, Rochester); Benjamin C. Smith (Carnegie Mellon, Pittsburgh, Penn State); and Matthew H. Tran.


These six seniors have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,500 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $31 million that will be offered next spring. To be considered for a Merit Scholarship® award, semifinalists must fulfill several requirements to advance to the finalist level of the competition. More than 90 percent of the semifinalists are expected to attain finalist standing, and about half of the finalists will win a National Merit Scholarship, earning the Merit Scholar title.

The nationwide pool of semifinalists, representing less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors, includes the highest- scoring entrants in each state.


The 2019 National Merit Scholarship winners will be announced in four monthly nationwide news releases between April and July. These scholarship recipients will join some 338,000 other distinguished young people who have earned the Merit Scholar title.