On February 1, 2021, the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) mailed Certificates of Merit to principals across the country, notifying them of the students who have advanced to Finalist standing in the 66th annual National Merit Scholarship Program. Over 15,000 National Merit Semifinalists named in September 2020 earned the competition's Finalist standing, including two Putnam County Schools students from Hurricane High School.
Putnam County Schools would like to congratulate Hurricane High School seniors Aiden Bernard and Isaiah Huffman for being named National Merit Finalists for the 2020-2021 school year!
Over 1.5 million juniors in about 21,000 high schools entered the 2021 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2019 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®), which served as an initial screen of program entrants. The nationwide pool of Semifinalists, representing less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors, includes the highest-scoring entrants in each state.
As Finalists, both students submitted a detailed scholarship application. They provide information about their academic record, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment, and honors and awards. Students also submit an essay and earn SAT scores that confirm their earlier performance on the qualifying test. Aiden and Isaiah have an outstanding academic record and have been endorsed and recommended by a school official.
Merit Scholar designees are selected based on their skills, accomplishments, and potential for success in rigorous college studies, without regard to gender, race, ethnic origin, or religious preference. All Finalists will be considered for National Merit Scholarships to be offered in 2021.
Three types of scholarships will be offered for Finalist in the spring of 2021. There will be 2,500 National Merit Scholarships, 1,000 Corporate Merit Scholarship awards, and approximately 4,100 college-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards for Finalists who will attend the sponsor institution. These winners will be announced in four nationwide news releases beginning in April and concluding in July.