Four seniors from Bexley High School have earned semifinalist status in this year's National Merit Scholarship Program.

Four seniors from Bexley High School have earned semifinalist status in this year's National Merit Scholarship Program.

Arye Espinosa-Smith, Frederick Gu, Wyatt Peery and Louisa Wruck, seniors, all received the honor late last month.

Each entered the National Merit Program by taking the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) and by meeting published program entry/participation requirements, according to the National Merit Scholarship Corp.

The four Bexley students are among some 16,000 students from across the United States who learned in early September that they had qualified as semifinalists.

Espinosa-Smith, the son of Violeta and Todd Smith, plans to continue his education in college, though he is not sure yet which one. He said he has been visiting a number of schools and is considering a future in engineering.

Gu has narrowed his search down to "eight or 10 schools," including Ohio State University. The son of Xinyang Gu and Li Zheng, Gu ran track for part of his high school career and has appreciated his Advanced Placement (AP) physics course.

Peery, whose parents are Carla and Chris Peery, serves as President of the school's Junior Statement of America chapter and plays clarinet in the band. He expects to pursue a career in aerospace engineering.

Wruck, the daughter of Karen Wruck and the late Eric Wruck, is still narrowing down her college applications. The current list numbers 12 schools, including Davidson College, which both of her parents attended. She performs with the BHS orchestra, as well as the community group, Youth Philharmonic, and runs for Bexley's cross country team. She expects to explore possible careers in finance and medicine.

"To be considered for a National Merit Scholarship, semifinalists must advance to finalist standing in the competition by meeting high academic standards and all other requirements ... " according to the National Merit website.

Students will learn in spring 2013 whether they have been selected to receive a scholarship award of one of three types: National Merit; Corporate-sponsored Merit; and College-sponsored Merit.

Commended Students are also recognized for their "exceptional academic promise" although they do not continue in the competition for the National Merit Scholarship awards. Bexley's Commended Students, who placed among the top 5 percent of more than 1.5 million students who entered the 2013 competition, are: Evan Gutter, Josh Hoffman, Peter Kirschner, Elizabeth Maher, Luck Wilhelm and Katherine Wittig.