Blake Morrow, a senior at West Fargo High School, is among approximately 16,000 Semifinalists in the 56th annual National Merit Scholarship Program as announced by officials of National Merit Scholarship Corporation (nmsc). These academically talented high school seniors have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 8,400 National Merit Scholarships, worth more than $36 million, that will be offered next spring.
To be considered for a Merit Scholarship award, semifinalists must fulfill several requirements to advance to the finalist level of the competition. About 90 percent of the semifinalists are expected to attain finalist standing, and approximately half of the finalists will win a National Merit Scholarship, earning the Merit Scholar title.
Three types of National Merit Scholarships will be offered in the spring of 2011. Every finalist will compete for one of 2,500 National Merit $2500 Scholarships that will be awarded on a state representational basis. About 1,000 corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards will be provided by approximately 250 corporations and business organizations for finalists who meet their specified criteria, such as children of the grantor's employees or residents of communities where sponsor plants or offices are located. In addition, about 200 colleges and universities are expected to finance some 4,900 college-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards for finalists who will attend the sponsor institution.
National Merit Scholarship winners of 2011 will be announced in four nationwide news releases beginning in April and concluding in July. These scholarship recipients will join more than 275,000 other distinguished young people who have earned the Merit Scholar title.