Westerville News & Public Opinion

CSG applauds six on National Merit list

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The six National Merit Scholarship semifinalists at Columbus School for Girls are (from left) Meredith Meyer, Yi-Qiu Pu, Allyson Coble, Cecilia Pesavento, Emily Bichsel and Olivia Beeson.

Six students at Columbus School for Girls were named as 2014 National Merit Scholarship Program semifinalists.

They are: Olivia Beeson of Westerville, Emily Bichsel and Meredith Meyer of Bexley, Allyson Coble of Gahanna, Cecilia Pesavento of Upper Arlington and Yi-Qiu Pu of Hilliard. These students are among approximately 16,000 semifinalists in the 59th annual National Merit Scholarship Program.

About 1.5 million juniors in more than 22,000 high schools entered the 2014 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2012 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. 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 number of semifinalists in a state is proportioned to the state's percentage of the national total of graduating seniors.

These students have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 8,000 National Merit Scholarships worth about $35 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. About 90 percent of the semifinalists are expected to attain finalist standing, and more than half of the finalists will win a National Merit Scholarship, earning the Merit Scholar title.

Every finalist will compete for one of 2,500 National Merit $2,500 Scholarships that will be awarded on a state representational basis. About 1,000 corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards will be provided by approximately 250 corporations and business organizations for finalists who meet their specified criteria. In addition, about 200 colleges and universities are expected to finance some 4,500 college-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards for finalists who will attend the sponsor institution.

National Merit Scholarship winners will be announced between April and July.