13 local students named National Merit semifinalists

Six Guilderland High School students and seven Bethlehem High School students are among the approximately 16,000 semifinalists in the 59th annual National Merit Scholarship Program.

The Guilderland students are: Matthew Gu, Hahn-Sol Kang, Justina Liu, Isaac Malsky, Luxi Peng, and Michelle Xiong.

The Bethlehem semifinalists are: James Barriere, Julia Champagne, Elizabeth Cultrara, Katherine Kolodziej, Max Rosenberg, Seth Schoenhaus, and Aria Shi.

These high school seniors have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 8,000 National Merit Scholarships worth about $35 million that will be offered next spring.

About 1.5 million juniors in more than 22,000 high schools entered the 2014 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2012 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test, which served as an initial screen of program entrants.

The nationwide pool of semifinalists, representing less than 1 percent of United States 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.

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