2023 National Merit Semifinalists: How Many Does Your School Have?

People Newspapers here recognizes the dozens of 2023 National Merit Scholarship Program semifinalists from our markets for achieving a status earned by less than 1% of high school seniors nationwide.

The students entered the 68th annual National Merit Scholarship Program as juniors by taking the 2021 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®). The nationwide pool of semifinalists includes the highest-scoring entrants in each state.

The program honors individual students who show exceptional academic ability and potential for success in rigorous college studies.

The nonprofit National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) named approximately 16,000 semifinalists nationwide. Its leaders expect 95% of those to become finalists and about half of the finalists to win National Merit Scholarships.

Students will learn in early 2023 whether they are finalists, but the NMSC typically doesn’t announce their names to the media. Some 7,500 National Merit Scholarships – $30 million worth – will be offered in the spring.

To become a finalist, the semifinalist and a high school official must submit a detailed scholarship application with information about the student’s academic record, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment, and honors and awards received.


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