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2015-16 News Releases


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For Immediate Release:
Sept. 11, 2015
For more information, contact the Dept. of School and Community Relations at 703-228-6004 www.apsva.us
 2016 National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists Named
Today, the National Merit Scholarship Program announced that 8 Arlington students are semifinalists in the 61st annual National Merit Scholarship Competition. Semifinalists are the highest scoring entrants in each state and represent less than one percent of the nation's seniors.

The Arlington students are among the 17,000 semifinalists named nationally. More than 1.5 million students competed when they were juniors by taking the 2014 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT). These students will have the opportunity to compete for approximately 7,400 Merit Scholarship awards totaling $34 million. Every finalist will compete for one of 3,400 National Merit $2,500 Scholarships that will be awarded on a state representational basis.

The semifinalists include:

Washington-Lee High School: Katherine A. Emanuel, Darby A. Haller, Catherine I. Hamilton, Peter Huson, David N. Preiss and Apollo E. Yong,

Yorktown High School: Madison A. Ihrig and Justin Q. Wu

In addition, Marcus Alder and Juliana Bain who attend Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology (in Fairfax) have been named National Merit semifinalists.

* TJHSST is a Governor's School for Science and Technology located in Fairfax County. The school serves students in Arlington, Fairfax, Fauquier, Loudoun, and Prince William counties as well as the cities of Fairfax and Falls Church. APS pays the tuition costs for students who attend the school.

Merit Scholar designees must have an outstanding academic record throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by the school principal, and earn SAT scores that confirm the student's earlier qualifying test performance. They also must demonstrate participation and leadership in school and community activities, and exhibit potential for success in rigorous college studies.

About 90 percent of the semifinalists are expected to advance to the finalist level of competition. The National Merit Scholarship Corporation will release the names of Merit Scholarship winners beginning in April 2016.

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