High Schoolers Named National Merit Semifinalists

September 29, 2017
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Dozens of Two River Area high school seniors received one of the highest academic honors this week when they were recognized as National Merit Scholarship Program Semifinalists. These students were among the highest scorers in the state on the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test (PSAT), taken during their junior year.

According to the National Merit Scholarship Corporation, of the 1.6 million students across the country who took the test, approximately 16,000 achieved semifinalist status. Semifinalists must now submit a detailed scholarship application, providing information about their academic record and participation in school, community and leadership activities, and be recommended by a high school administrator.

Nearly all of the semifinalists will become finalists, but only half of those will ultimately be named Merit Scholars and win a National Merit Scholarship. More than $32 million in scholarships will be awarded next spring by the program, now in its 63rd year.

Here are the Two River area National Merit Scholarship Program Semifinalists:

Biotechnology High School, Freehold Township

Sanjana Akula, Alvin Chen, Sarah Lin, Daniel Liu, Arpan Sahoo, Hoang-Nam Vu, and Joshua Yu

Christian Brothers Academy, Lincroft

James Clabby, Daniel Draganoff, and Peter Hegel

Colts Neck High School, Colts Neck

Kristen Gambardella, Megha Jain, and Jacqueline Vicksman

High Technology High School, Lincroft

Jennifer Driscoll, Gillian Finnegan, Raqhav Gopalakrishnan, Daniel Jiang, Eric Jiang, Eric Lou, Karan Menon, Melina Muthuswamy, Darren Schachter, Linda Ting, Christina Wang, Kaylee Wang, Yihan Wu, Arvind Yalavarti, Christopher Yin, Valerie Yip, Allen Zhang, and Lori Zhang

Holmdel High School, Holmdel

Jessica Kuleshov, Tommie Reerink, and Erica Wu

Middletown High School South, Middletown

Brian Taylor

Red Bank Catholic High School, Red Bank

Kaitlyn Wood

Red Bank Regional High School, Little Silver

Harrison Jain

St. John Vianney High School, Holmdel

Kaleigh Remick

This article was first published in the Sept. 21-28, 2017 print edition of the Two River Times.

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