Every year schools anxiously await the National Merit Scholarship Program announcement of the Commended Scholars and the National Merit Semi-Finalists in September.

The Prosper Independent School District recently announced this year’s National Merit Commended Scholars from Prosper High include Isabella Abraham, Matthew Alsina, Paige Bluj, Noah Bowman, Valor Boyd, Grace Cronin, Arjun Desai, Aryan Dhanraj, Brooks Feldker, Jordan Guerrero, Ryan Hogg, Adam Kern, Taylor McCoy, Brandon Monaco, Kathleen Nguyen, Dominic Nuzzi, Tiarra Pauleus and Allan Watatani.

Only 16,500 students in the nation qualify as National Merit Semi-Finalists. From this list, the National Merit Finalists are named who become eligible for the approximate 8,200 National Merit Scholarships. Prosper is proud to announce that five PHS students are named National Merit Semi-Finalists. They are George Frederick, Trett Johnson, Madison Lee, Grant Typrin and Carson Weddle.

According to their website, the National Merit Program “was established in 1955 — a time in which there was concern that the United States was lagging behind in the cold war scientific race, but the public was indifferent to rewarding intellectual accomplishment. In response, the National Merit Scholarship Program was founded to identify and honor scholastically talented American youth and to encourage them to develop their abilities to the fullest. Through this nationwide competition National Merit Scholarships are awarded to program Finalists and Special Scholarships are awarded to other high performing participants who meet a corporate sponsor’s eligibility criteria.”

The determination is based upon a student’s performance on the PSAT their Junior year of high school. Approximately 1.5 million qualifying students take the testcommended Scholars in the U.S. Of those 1.5 million, only about 30,000 qualify as National Merit Commended Scholars.

Frederick is the son of Todd and Emily Frederick. He has been in Prosper ISD since fourth grade and is planning to attend college after graduation. He credits his academic success to hard work.

Johnson is the son of Gary and Rhonda Johnson. He has been in Prosper ISD throughout his entire school career. He plans to attend college after high school to major in biomedical or chemical engineering to later work in a research and development environment.

He took the PSAT freshman and sophomore year to help understand the format and types of questions the test would ask. Before taking the PSAT junior year, he took three practice tests in the weeks leading up to the test to see how he needed to time himself for the actual test and then brushed up on any skills and topics needed before taking the actual test.

Lee is the daughter of Steve Lee and Ji-Yeon Yu. She has attended Prosper ISD schools since third grade. After high school, Madison plans to attend college to study chemistry. To prepare for the test, she took the PSAT team class and took several practice tests.

Typrin is the son of Andrew and Leslie Typrin. Grant moved to Prosper the summer before seventh grade and has attended PISD schools since then. After high school, he plans to attend the University of Texas in Austin. To prepare for the PSAT, he took several practice tests and addressed weak points during study time which proved helpful in improving his score.

Weddle is the son of Craig and Jennifer Weddle. He has been in Prosper ISD since seventh grade. After high school he plans to study biomedical engineering and then go to medical school to pursue a career in medical research and development.