42 Manual students ranked as National Merit Semifinalists

Jonathan Ryan

42 Manual students have achieved National Merit Semifinalist level for their high scores on the Preliminary SAT or PSAT.

Manual had more semifinalists than any other school in Kentucky. The closest school was St. Xavier with 22 semifinalists.

Over one million high school students enter into the National Merit Scholarship Program (NMSP) but only 16,000 students nationwide achieve semifinalist status.

The test is important to many students because of the scholarships available to those who place higher in the NMSP; about half of the students who achieve finalist level are awarded scholarships by the NMSP.

To achieve finalist level, the semifinalists must continue to meet high academic standards, score high on the SAT and write an essay among other things.

The PSAT measures critical writing and reading skills and math problem solving. It’s designed to help students prepare for the important SAT.

Seniors took the PSAT last October during their junior year and only now have they received the results.

“I took the prep course offered at manual and it was time consuming but worth it.” said Jimmy England (12). “ I was ecstatic when I found out I had qualified.”

This number of semifinalists is consistent with last year’s seniors who had 43 semifinalists.