Congratulations to our Four Titan National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists

Congratulations to our four T.C. Williams High School seniors who have been named National Merit Scholarship semifinalists and 13 students who were recognized as Commended Students for their exceptional academic promise. The four semifinalists are among the 16,000 semifinalists in the 64th annual National Merit Scholarship Program and will have the opportunity to compete for 7,500 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $31 million that will be offered next spring.

Mark Bailey

I may be in interested in studying medicine or health related topics in college. I’m also really interested in languages. I’ve taken Chinese for seven years. I picked it in sixth grade — it seemed like a language that has become more and more important. I find it really interesting to learn about how people communicate with each other, said Mark.

Ava Benbow

My two favorite subjects are science and art. At T.C. there are really great science classes. Every time I try a science, it’s my new favorite, but right now biology is what I’m thinking about. I’m also really interested in genetics and that’s something that I’d be really interested in studying in college.”

Ana HumphreyAna Humphrey

I’ve had this incredible fascination with exoplanets and space and astrophysics in general. I would love to pursue research in that area, potentially even becoming a professor — a research professor so that I can mentor other students and help them discover their own passions for research and science. I also really care about the environment and environmental issues. I’d like to continue to mentor students, help them learn about the world around them and how to make it a better place.”

Alexander Schlegel

Music and physics are my two main things. I was always good at math and enjoy doing it. When I was introduced to physics, the problem-solving aspect really attracted me. I’m totally passionate about it. It’s really what I enjoy doing. On the artsy side, I’m a musician. I play clarinet and piano. I really enjoy both of those things and hope to continue playing them in college,” said Alexander.

These students are among more than 1.6 million juniors in about 22,000 high schools who entered the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2017 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®), which served as an initial screen of program entrants.

We are immensely proud of our outstanding Titans who were named National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists. To have four of our students among the less than 1.1 percent of U.S. high school seniors to achieve this status is such a significant achievement. It’s a tribute to their hard work and dedication to their academics. We are so excited to see what the future holds for these talented students,” said T.C. Williams Principal Peter Balas.

To become a semifinalist is no easy feat. A student must have an outstanding academic record throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by a high school official, write an essay and earn SAT® scores that confirm the student’s earlier performance on the qualifying test.

Commended Students

Of the more than 1.6 million juniors who took the PSAT in October 2017, 34,000 earned scores in the top 3.3% and are recognized by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation as Commended Students for their exceptional academic promise. Congratulations to the following 13 Class of 2019 Titans who have been named Commended Students in the 2018 National Merit Scholarship Program:

  • Lily Clausen
  • John Dresen
  • Adriana Frazier
  • Griffin O’Harris
  • Edward Kaiser
  • Leslie Lytle
  • Hannah Miller
  • Eileen Powell
  • William Rhodes
  • Victoria Rodriguez
  • Grace Simmons
  • Shaan Shuster
  • Caroline Simmons

All of these students will be honored at a special breakfast with their families in early October. The 2019 National Merit Scholarship winners will be announced beginning in April and concluding in July 2019.

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