In a historic moment, Owasso High School proudly announces the recognition of eight of its outstanding seniors as Semifinalists in the prestigious 69th annual National Merit Scholarship Program, setting a new school record. The National Merit Scholarship Corporation has bestowed this honor upon approximately 16,000 students nationwide, and Owasso is thrilled to be part of this distinguished group.
The remarkable students, Evan Carpenter, Katelyn Crossman, Sterling Draper, Saul Pasquez, Jacob Raulie, Alex Stansill, Ashlyn Stephenson, and Tian Wang, have earned the opportunity to advance to the next stage of the competition. They will compete for a share of some 7,140 National Merit Scholarships valued at nearly $28 million, which will be offered in the spring.
Expressing her admiration for these exceptional scholars, OPS Superintendent Dr. Margaret Coates stated, “We are immensely proud of these students and their dedication to academic excellence. Achieving the title of National Merit Semifinalist is a testament to all of their hard work, talent, and commitment. This record-breaking number of semifinalists is also a reflection of the dedication and expertise of the outstanding educators in our district, who have helped inspire and guide these students throughout their academic careers. We are very proud of these students and look forward to their continued success.”
The journey to becoming a National Merit Semifinalist began for these high school juniors when they took the 2022 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT). This test served as an initial screening for program entrants. The nationwide pool of Semifinalists, comprising less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors, includes the highest-scoring entrants in each state. The number of Semifinalists in a state is proportional to the state’s percentage of the national total of graduating seniors.
To advance to the Finalist stage, a Semifinalist and a high school official must submit a detailed scholarship application. This application includes information about the Semifinalist’s academic record, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment history, and honors and awards received. Moreover, a Semifinalist must exhibit an exceptional academic record throughout high school, garner an endorsement and recommendation from a high school official, compose an essay, and provide SAT or ACT scores confirming their prior performance on the qualifying test.
All National Merit Scholarship winners will ultimately be chosen from the group of Finalists, with the announcement scheduled for February 2024. It’s important to note that Merit Scholar designees are selected based on their skills, accomplishments, and potential for success in rigorous college studies, without any consideration of gender, race, ethnic origin, or religious preference.
The highly anticipated announcement of the National Merit Scholarship winners for 2024 will occur through four nationwide news releases, commencing in April and concluding in July. These accomplished scholarship recipients will join the ranks of more than 375,000 other distinguished young individuals who have earned the esteemed Merit Scholar title.