In February, Liam O. received the distinguished designation of National Merit Finalist. Liam is the first National Merit Finalist to come from Post Oak's High School, which graduated its first class in 2016.
Students enter the National Merit® Scholarship Program by taking the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®) as juniors. Each year's PSAT/NMSQT is the qualifying test designated for entry to a particular year's competition. For example, the 2019 PSAT/NMSQT is the qualifying test for entry to the competition for scholarships to be awarded in 2021.
Out of 1.5 million entrants, 50,000 receive commended recognition, and 16,000 of them become semifinalists. Semifinalists are the highest-scoring entrants in each state. Out of the 16,000 semifinalists, 15,000 become a finalist. To become a finalist, semifinalists have to complete an application, have a consistently very high academic record, write an essay, and be endorsed and recommended by a school official.
Merit Scholar designees are chosen from the Finalist group based on their abilities, skills, and accomplishments. Between March and June, 7,600 finalists will receive a Merit Scholarship® award. Liam is hoping to receive a merit award from the University of Southern California.
Let us congratulate Liam on his accomplishment and wish him well in the next round.
(Read more about Liam in the previous news announcing his semifinalist status.)