Upper School Students Become Semifinalists for National Merit Scholarships
National Merit Semifinalists

Three King students have been recognized as semifinalists for a National Merit Scholarship, a college fund program that selects individual students for their exceptional academic ability and potential for success in rigorous college studies. Karina Rao ’22, Ronald Harvey ’22, and Carson Perlman ’22 must fulfill several requirements to advance to the finalist level for a chance to be awarded a National Merit Scholarship and earn the title of Merit Scholar.  

"I am very grateful for this opportunity and excited to try and advance,” said Ronald who will be graduating from King in May. According to the National Merit Scholarship Corporation, about 95 percent of semifinalists typically attain finalist standing, but only about half will win a scholarship. 

“I feel that my education at King has prepared me to advance to the finalist level because my courses helped me to develop key academic skills such as thoughtful analysis, creative problem solving, and critical thinking, which can be applied to any situation,” said Karina. “My teachers’ willingness to work with me individually has also had an indescribable impact on my academic growth and success,” she added.  

To become finalists, Karina, Ronald, and Carson will have to submit an application demonstrating academic rigor, leadership ability, and community service for further review. They will also have to submit an essay and their SAT or ACT score. 

The students entered the 2022 National Merit Scholarship Program last year by taking the 2020 Preliminary SAT, which served as an initial screening for program eligibility. The semifinalists, which represent less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors, include the highest-scoring students in each state proportionate to the national total of graduating seniors. 

“It would be an honor to win a National Merit Scholarship. I am proud to have been named a semifinalist and I'm extremely excited for my classmates that have achieved this as well,” said Carson, who hopes that all three King semifinalists will secure a scholarship. National Merit Scholarship winners will be announced in the Spring of 2022 beginning in April.