Four students in the Forsyth County high school Class of 2017 will attend college this fall with the prestigious title of National Merit Scholar.
The National Merit Scholarship Corporation announced more than 3,200 winners of college-sponsored scholarships, three of whom recently graduated from West Forsyth High School and one of whom is now a Lambert High School graduate.
The National Merit Scholarship Program recognizes students who, as juniors, earned the highest scores on the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT). About 16,000 students were named semifinalists on a state-representational basis among more than 1.6 million entrants in more than 22,000 high schools — they represent less than 1 percent of the nation’s high school seniors.
Officials of each sponsor college selected their scholarship recipients from among the 15,000 finalists who were named earlier this year and who plan to attend their institution.
This year, 182 higher education institutions gave scholarships, including 103 private and 79 public institutions in 44 states and the District of Columbia.
College-sponsored scholarships are between $500 and $2,000 annually for up to four years of undergraduate study.
An additional group of these awards will be announced in July, bringing the total number of college-sponsored Merit Scholars in 2017 to about 4,000.
They will be among a group of about 7,500 high school seniors this year who will receive a total of more than $32 million.
Earlier this spring, the program announced winners of corporate-sponsored scholarships and National Merit $2,500 Scholarships.
Semifinalists submitted a detailed application that included writing an essay and providing information about extracurricular activities, awards and leadership positions. They also had to demonstrate “an outstanding academic record, be endorsed and recommended by a high school official and earn SAT scores that confirmed the qualifying test performance.”