EVANSTON, IL -  Officials of National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) announced the names of approximately 16,000 Semifinalists in the 66th annual National Merit Scholarship Program on Wednesday. These academically talented high school seniors have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,600 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $30 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 more than half of the finalists will win a National Merit Scholarship, earning the Merit Scholar® title, says the announcement letter.

Eleven students from Watchung Hills Regional High School have achieved this honor.

The top states that produced National Merit Scholars were California with 7,235; Texas with 3,448; New York with 2,889, and New Jersey with 2,560, according to Compass Education Group.

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Three types of National Merit Scholarships will be offered in the spring of 2021. Every finalist will compete for one of 2,500 National Merit® $2500 Scholarships that will be awarded on a state-representational basis. About 1,000 corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards will be provided by approximately 220 corporations and business organizations for finalists who meet their specified criteria, such as children of the grantor’s employees or residents of communities where sponsor plants or offices are located. In addition, about 180 colleges and universities are expected to finance some 4,100 college-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards for finalists who will attend the sponsor institution.

National Merit Scholarship winners of 2021 will be announced in four nationwide news releases beginning in April and concluding in July. These scholarship recipients will join more than 353,000 other distinguished young people who have earned the Merit Scholar title, according to the NMSC.

The recognized Watchung Hills' students are:

Horzepa, Michael
Hu, Victor
Huang, Elizabeth
Margulies, Charles

Mehler, Nora
Navani, Rohil
Przybylski, Paulina

Tseng, Wesley
Venkatesh, Neha

Wang, Valerie

Wu, Tyler


The entire New Jersey list can be seen in the photo gallery.


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