Three Madison-Ridgeland Academy seniors, Holly Hendry, Arnob Iftekhar and Emory Ware (pictured, left-right) were named National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists in the 65th annual National Merit Scholarship Program. The announcement was made today by the officials of National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC).
Each year, approximately 1.6 million high school students enter the National Merit® Scholarship Program, which is an academic competition for recognition and scholarships that began in 1955. Of those entries, only approximately one percent qualify as Semifinalists. These students are chosen from a pool with the highest PSAT/NMSQT ® Selection Index scores, and who have qualified for recognition either as a Commended Student or Semifinalist. To ensure that academically talented young people from all parts of the United States are included in this talent pool, Semifinalists are designated on a state-representational basis. They are the highest scoring entrants in each state.
"I am excited to see three members of our senior class recognized as 2020 National Merit Scholarship semifinalists. This achievement accentuates the commitment to academic excellence at Madison-Ridgeland Academy," said MRA High School Principal Greg Self. "I'm very proud of these students and their teachers who have impacted their lives from kindergarten through high school."
Each of these approximately 16,000 Semifinalists have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,600 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $31 million that will be offered next spring. In February 2020, some 15,000 Semifinalists will be notified they have advanced to Finalist standing. All winners of Merit Scholarship® awards are chosen from this Finalist group based on their abilities, skills, and accomplishments - without regard to gender, race, ethnic origin, or religious preference.