Local National Merit semifinalists named
A good number of area students were among the nation’s 16,000 top high schoolers who advanced to the semifinals of the National Merit Scholarship Program.
The distinction is reserved for those who score in the highest percentile on the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test. About 1.6 million juniors take the test each year.
To become a finalist, students or administrators must submit a comprehensive scholarship application that includes academic records, community and school involvement, employment and honors.
Those who earn the National Merit Scholar title are eligible for a share of $31 million in scholarships.
Area semifinalists include:
Argyle High School: Timothy Davis
Guyer High School: Gabriel Lee and Sarah Spivey
Liberty Christian School: Ashley Howard
Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science: Alexander Battin, Hansa Boddu, Andrew Bogdan, Sophia Boisvert, Thien Bui, Grace Chang, Melanie Che, Hannah Chen, Joy Cheshire, Justin Cho, Natasha Chugh, Connor Chung, Amogh Dambal, Charles Coppieters ‘t Wallant, Benjamin Davis, Destiny Dong, Leo Dong, Garren Ferreira, Cassidy Frier, Pavan Govu, Caleb Hamby, Luke Hardison, Ethan Hardy, Vi-Anh Hoang, Hee Jae Hong, Christopher Hu, Aaron Huang, Angie Huang, Justin Huang, Kevin Jacob, Jacqueline Jia, Charly Jin, Neha Kalakuntla, Anusheh Kashif, Ellen Kasradze, Luis Kim, Noah Kim, Joseph Koh, Arham Kothari, Riya Kumar, Quan Le, Jimmy Liu, Samuel Liu, Yuqing Liu, Jonathan Lu, Monica Mahajan, Maya Mallya, Tejas Mehta, Raahi Menon, Madhurima Narendran, Puja Nayak, Liam Nickell, Mira Patel, Joy Peng, Veena Peraka, Pratyush Potu, Ellen Qian, Manasi Ramadurgum, Cari Reinert, Kenneth Rogers, Kavitya Sarma, Ian Sepdhal, Ria Shah, Melody Shen, Thomas Symalla, Sangita Vasikaran, Karen Wang, Lainey Wang, Bingxin Yang, Tiffany Yang, David Yue, Philip Zeng, Ann Zhang, David Zhao and Alan Zhu.
School kicks off annual Kid-to-Kid program
Eighth-graders at McMath Middle School are spending their lunch periods in the classroom again this year as part of the school’s Kid-to-Kid program.
The program, pioneered by volunteer Bill Reed in 2016, allows students to video chat with scientists, diplomats, authors and other people working in various fields across the globe. The goal, Reed said, is to expose the students to different cultures and career paths.
“I like talking to people that come in and teach us something new,” eighth-grader Cayden Cagle said.
So far this year, students have talked with New York University journalism professor and author Brooke Kroeger as well as Vicki Martin, a social scientist from Cornell University. Next up, students will pepper former U.S. Justice Department official Chuck Rosenberg and scientists with the Ocean Exploration Trust with questions.