Shorecrest seniors RJ Ayers, Will Hess and Aidan Samuelson have been named 2019 National Merit Semifinalists by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation. The nationwide pool of Semifinalists, representing less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors, includes the highest-scoring entrants in each state. Ayers, Hess, and Samuelson are among the 10 students in the City of St. Petersburg to earn the honor.

St. Petersburg, FL, September 27, 2018 — Shorecrest seniors RJ Ayers, Will Hess and Aidan Samuelson have been named 2019 National Merit Semifinalists by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation. The three Shorecrest seniors earned their semifinalist status with their exceptional scores on the 2017 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®), which served as an initial screen of program entrants. The nationwide pool of Semifinalists, representing less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors, includes the highest-scoring entrants in each state. Ayers, Hess, and Samuelson are among the 10 students in the City of St. Petersburg to earn the honor.

To become a Finalist, the Semifinalist and his or her high school must submit a detailed scholarship application, in which they provide information about the Semifinalist’s academic record, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment, and honors and awards received. A Semifinalist must have an outstanding academic record throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by a high school official, write an essay, and earn SAT® scores that confirm the student’s earlier performance on the qualifying test.

Finalists will be notified in February. All National Merit Scholarship winners will be selected from this group of Finalists. Merit Scholar designees are selected on the basis of their skills, accomplishments, and potential for success in rigorous college studies, without regard to gender, race, ethnic origin, or religious preference.

In addition, four seniors were named Commended Students in the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Program, scoring in the top 3% of approximately 1.6 million juniors: Benjamin Berner, Jake Freedman, William Newton and Jordan Tralins.

About Shorecrest:
Founded in 1923, Shorecrest Preparatory School is a PK(3) through 12th grade coed, nonsectarian independent school located in Tampa Bay. By offering its families choice, support, and balance, Shorecrest graduates empathetic, independent thinkers who succeed at the university level, pursue their passions, and lead purposeful lives. Learn more at www.shorecrest.org.

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