Two seniors from the region named semi-finalists of the National Merit | Local News

HANNIBAL – Two high school students from the region are among some 16,000 semi-finalists across the country in the national merit scholarship program.

Sam Hirner of Hannibal High School and Evan Nierman of Palmyra High School say they are honored to participate in the program offering some 7,500 scholarships worth nearly $ 30 million.

“I am incredibly proud of myself and my school. The way I was able to use my education to become a semi-finalist says a lot about my teachers and the quality of the education I received. I’m really grateful for the way I’ve been grown so far, ”Nierman said.

The path to the 67th annual scholarship program began in first year when students took the PSAT. The highest-rated students in each state become semi-finalists, which is less than 1% of U.S. high school students.

“It’s one of those things that you know is a possibility, but you don’t really think it’s going to happen. I’m just very surprised, ”said Hirner, who attributed the support to the teachers at Hannibal High School. “When you speak at someone’s level, encourage them and say that you can learn at a higher level, it makes me excited to learn more. “

The next step in the competition, becoming a finalist, is to submit a detailed application focused on the student’s academic record, participation in school and community activities, leadership abilities, employment, and honors and awards. Students are also required to write an essay, submit letters of recommendation, and achieve SAT or ACT scores that confirm their PSAT performance.

The request is due October 6.

About 15,000 of the semi-finalists are expected to advance to finalist level in February, and about half of the finalists will win a National Merit Scholarship.

Three types of national merit scholarships will be offered in the spring.

Each finalist will compete for one of 2,500 national merit scholarships of $ 2,500 awarded on a representative state basis. Approximately 1,000 corporate-sponsored merit scholarships will be provided by some 220 companies and trade organizations to finalists meeting their specified criteria, and approximately 180 colleges and universities are expected to fund some 4,000 merit scholarships sponsored by them. colleges for finalists attending the sponsoring institution.

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