CR resident among National Merit Scholarship recipients

More than 2,000 additional winners of National Merit Scholarships financed by colleges and universities have been announced by National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

They include Coon Rapids resident Daniel Johnson, who graduated last month from Fridley High School.

Johnson received a University of Minnesota National Merit Scholarship, and has listed international relations as his probable career field.

These merit scholar designees join over 2,500 other college-sponsored award recipients who were announced in late May.

Officials of each sponsor college selected their scholarship winners from among the finalists in the National Merit Scholarship Program who will attend their institution.

College-sponsored awards provide between $500 and $2,000 annually for up to four years of undergraduate study at the institution financing the scholarship.

This is the last group of National Merit Scholar designees to be announced in 2012 by National Merit Scholarship Corporation (nmsc).

This final group of winners brings the number of 2012 National Merit Scholars to approximately 8,100.

This year’s competition for National Merit Scholarships began when approximately 1.5 million juniors in some 22,000 high schools took the 2010 Preliminary sat/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (psat/nmsqt®), which served as an initial screen of program entrants.

In September 2011, about 16,000 semifinalists were named on a state representational basis in numbers proportional to each state’s percentage of the national total of graduating high school seniors.

Semifinalists were the highest-scoring program entrants in each state and represented less than 1 percent of the nation’s seniors.

To become a finalist, each semifinalist had to submit a detailed scholarship application, which included writing an essay and describing leadership positions and contributions in school and community activities, showing an outstanding academic record, and being endorsed and recommended by a high school official.

Semifinalists also had to take the SAT and earn scores that confirmed their performance on the initial qualifying test.

From the semifinalist group, about 15,000 attained finalist standing, and more than half of the finalists were chosen to receive National Merit Scholarships.

Over the past 57 years, more than 292,000 young men and women have won National Merit Scholarships worth nearly $1 billion.