SCOTCH PLAINS/FANWOOD, NJ -- Officials of National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) have announced the names of approximately 16,000 semifinalists in the 64th annual National Merit Scholarship Program.

Four academically talented seniors from Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School and 13 students from the Union County VoTech Schools made the prestigious list. They 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.

To be considered for a Merit Scholarship® award, semifinalists must fulfill several requirements to advance to the finalist level of the competition. Over 90 percent of the semifinalists are expected to attain finalist standing, and about half of them will win a National Merit Scholarship, earning the Merit Scholar® title.

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NMSC, a not-for-profit organization that operates without government assistance, was established in 1955 specifically to conduct the annual National Merit Scholarship Program. The scholarships are underwritten by NMSC with its own funds and by approximately 410 business organizations and higher education institutions that share NMSC’s goals of honoring the nation’s scholastic champions and encouraging the pursuit of academic excellence.

The local semifinalists are:

Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School
Joshua I. Venick
Lucy Zhang

A number of students who attend the Union County VoTech Schools were named among the National Merit Scholarship semifinalists:

Academy for Allied Health Sciences
Mara W. Rao

Academy for Information Technology
Sean M. Hough
Eshita Kar
Jordan M. Phillips
Anvik Reddy

Union County Magnet High School
Massimo Del Pizzo
Gayatri S.Ganesan
Daniel Matlin
Michael R. Matlin
Neil D. Mehta
Caitlin Moy
Varun Sangal
Jennifer Schug
Yueling K.  Xu

Ian J, Cheung is Scotch Plains-Fanwood’s only free daily paper. Sign up for our daily eNews and follow us on Facebook and twitter @SPF_TAP. Download the free TAPinto App for iPhone or Android.