Seven students from schools across Faulkner County were named National Merit Semifinalists on Wednesday for the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Program.
Conway High School’s Hunter Fleming, Mary Katherine Freyaldenhoven, Jovoni Johnson, Kendon Moline, Archer Murray and Gail Oudekerk as well as Greenbrier High School’s Braden Jerry were among the hundreds from Arkansas listed.
“Speaking on behalf of the entire [f]aculty/[s]taff at Conway High School, we are very proud to announce the [semifinalists] for the 2019 National Merit Scholarships,” Principal Buck Bing, said. “These students embody what we hope for all students from Conway High School: They are not just successful academically, but are involved in multiple aspects of the Conway High School experience.”
He said the district looks forward to the great things that the group from Conway will go on to accomplish.
“The National Merit Scholarship Program honors individuals who show exceptional academic ability and potential for success in rigorous college studies,” a news release from the organization reads.
The group, named by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation, were seven out of 16,000 semifinalists named across the U.S.
“These academically talented high school seniors have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,500 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $31 million that will be offered next spring,” the release states.
To be considered for a scholarship, semifinalists must complete several requirements to advance to the finalists level which includes a detailed scholarship application detailing academic record, participation in school and community activities, leadership roles, employment and honors and awards that the individual has received.
The applicant must also have an outstanding high school academic record, be recommended by a high school official, write an essay and earn scores on the SAT that reflect their earlier performance on the qualifying test.
According to the organization, of that 16,000, 15,000 students are projected to advance to go on and receive one of three National Merit Scholarships in spring of 2019 — the students qualified for this distinction by taking the Preliminary SAT /National Merit Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) and scoring in the top one percent of the nation.
“The outstanding work of our teachers with these bright students is exhibited in the large numbers of National Merit scholars that this district continues to produce,” says Superintendent Dr. Greg Murry. “We are proud of our students for this achievement. If you look closely at these students and their high school life, they are actively involved in both academics and activities that will prepare them to be great successes in their adult life. Indeed, they are already successful.”