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71 CMS seniors named National Merit semifinalists

Seventy-one seniors in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools were among about 16,000 students nationwide chosen as semifinalists for the 2022 National Merit Scholarship Program, which will provide nearly $30 million in scholarships in the spring.

Semifinalists were chosen based on scores from the 2020 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test, with the highest-scoring students from each state becoming semifinalists. The 16,000 semifinalists represent less than 1% of the total number of high school seniors in the U.S. To become finalists, they must submit a detailed scholarship application providing academic grades, participation in school and community activities, leadership abilities, honors and awards. In addition, they must earn a score on the SAT that confirms performance on the PSAT qualifying test, and they must write an essay.

Ardrey Kell led CMS high schools with 25 semifinalists, followed by Providence with 16 and Myers Park with 12. Hough had six semifinalists, East Mecklenburg had three, and Hopewell had two. Butler, Charlotte Engineering Early College, Independence, J.T. Williams Secondary Montessori, Levine Middle College, North Mecklenburg and South Mecklenburg each had one.

About 15,000 of the semifinalists are expected to make the finals. All National Merit Scholarship winners will be selected from a group of finalists that will be announced in February.

The National Merit Scholarship Corp. is a not-for-profit organization that does not receive government assistance. It was founded in 1955 to conduct the National Merit Scholarship Program. It has partnered with more than 400 businesses and institutions of higher education to encourage the pursuit of academic excellence.

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