EVANSTON, Ill. — Officials of National Merit Scholarship Corporation recently announced the names of approximately 16,000 semifinalists in the 57th annual National Merit Scholarship Program. 

Local students include Robbi D. Riggs, Conway Christian High School; Samuel Fletcher, Conway High School-East; Eileen F. Ablondi, Mallory S. Brooks, Jean G. Corbitt, Molly A. Evans, M. Ruth Gomez, Joshua C. Lewis, Justin C. Murdock, Benjamin Sattelberg, Vincent E. Senclair, Valentin D. Velchev and Parker W. West, Conway High School-West; and Jennifer E. Nulsen, Greenbrier High School.

These high school seniors have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 8,300 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $34 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 Scholar8 title.

NMSC, a not-for-profit organization that operates without government assistance, was established in 1955 specifically to conduct the annual National Merit Scholarship Program.