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4 MTHS Students Qualify as National Merit Semifinalists

2020 National Merit Program Semifinalists Theo Mohideen, Safi Patel, Victoria Wei and Andrew Xu from MTHS.

Four students from Montville Township High School in Montville, New Jersey, qualified as semifinalists in the 66th annual National Merit Scholarship Program.

MTHS seniors: Theo Mohideen, Safi Patel, Victoria Wei and Andrew Xu, were among the 16,000 names of nationwide semifinalists announced on Wednesday, Sept 9, 2020, by officials of the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC).

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. The number of Semifinalists in a state is proportional to the state’s percentage of the national total of graduating seniors.

The four academically talented MTHS seniors have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,600 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $30 million that will be offered during spring 2021.

To be considered for a Merit Scholarship® award, Semifinalists must fulfill several requirements to advance to the Finalist level of the competition. Over 90 percent of the Semifinalists are expected to attain Finalist standing, and more than half of the Finalists will win a National Merit Scholarship, earning the Merit Scholar® title.

NMSC, a not-for-profit organization that operates without government assistance, was established in 1955 specifically to conduct the annual National Merit Scholarship Program. Scholarships are underwritten by NMSC with its own funds and by 400 business organizations and higher education institutions that share NMSC’s goals of honoring the nation’s scholastic champions and encouraging the pursuit of academic excellence.

To become a Finalist, the Semifinalist and a high school official must submit a detailed scholarship application, in which they provide information about the Semifinalist’s academic record, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment, and honors and awards received.

A Semifinalist must have an outstanding academic record throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by a high school official, and write an essay. Of the 16,000 Semifinalists, about 15,000 are expected to advance to the Finalist level, and in February they will be notified of this designation.

All National Merit Scholarship winners will be selected from this group of Finalists. Merit Scholar designees are selected on the basis of their skills, accomplishments, and potential for success in rigorous college studies, without regard to gender, race, ethnic origin, or religious preference.

Three types of National Merit Scholarships will be offered in the spring of 2021. Every Finalist will compete for one of 2,500 National Merit® $2500 Scholarships that will be awarded on a state-representational basis.

About 1,000 corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards will be provided by approximately 220 corporations and business organizations for Finalists who meet their specified criteria, such as children of the grantor’s employees or residents of communities where sponsor plants or offices are located.

In addition, about 180 colleges and universities are expected to finance some 4,100 college-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards for Finalists who will attend the sponsor institution.

National Merit Scholarship winners of 2021 will be announced beginning in April and concluding in July. These scholarship recipients will join more than 353,000 other distinguished young people who have earned the Merit Scholar title.

MTHS provides educational opportunities for grades nine through grade twelve. It is one of seven schools in the Montville Township Public Schools district, which supports over 3,400 students in pre-kindergarten through grade 12. The district is comprised of five elementary schools, Robert R. Lazar Middle School and Montville Township High School.

National Merit Scholarship Program Semifinalists Theo Mohideen, Safi Patel, Victoria Wei and Andrew Xu, will now compete to become Finalists. All National Merit Scholarship winners will be selected from approximately 15,000 Finalists nationwide.





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