Students Selected as National Merit Scholarship Finalists


Arianna Pardue

Holt Lee and Joshua Leonard national merit finalist

The National Merit Scholarship Commendation letters are sent out to about 34,000 juniors a year out of the 50,000 who qualify. (National Merit Scholarships and the PSAT | The Princeton Review) To earn the Scholarship you must take the PSAT as a junior and some students can earn up to $2,500.

“I didn’t have to apply at all,” finalist Joshua Leonard said. “I just did good on the PSAT so if anyone wants to be a National Merit Scholar they should study for their PSAT so they can do good.”

The interesting thing about the National Merit Scholarship is that you do not need to apply to get it, there isn’t a way for you to apply. In order to receive the Scholarship you need an average score between 1420-1480.

“You don’t really have to apply, I didn’t do anything, I just took the PSAT,” finalist Holt Lee said.

Since it is a low effort application, and a high payoff scholarship, it is a pretty nice scholarship to get. The tips that are on the Princeton review are where you should go to prepare for PSAT, SAT, and even MSAT/LSAT. (PSAT Test Prep | The Princeton Review)

“They never contacted me, I got my score and four months later they were like hey you got National Merit,” Lee said.

The Scholarship is also low contact, so there is less stress attached to getting it.

“I’m excited to be a semi finalist because it should open up lots of doors for me and help me get more scholarships and make college cheaper,” Leonard said.

The National Merit Scholarship creates opportunities for students who are able to score highly on their PSAT. They are checking your PSAT to predict your SAT score.