Samuel A. Shah, a high school senior at Tree Of Life Christian Schools, is a semifinalist in the 64th annual National Merit Scholarship program.

He is one of 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, which served as an initial screen of program entrants.

A semifinalist must have an outstanding academic record throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by a high school official, write an essay and earn SAT scores that confirm the student's earlier performance on the qualifying test.

To become a finalist, the student and his or her high school must submit a detailed scholarship application, including information about the semifinalist's academic record, participation in school and community activities, employment and honors and awards received.

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