Florida Students Win National Merit Scholarships- One Tallahassee Winner

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Press Release: Florida Department of Education

Tallahassee, Fla., April 25, 2013 – More than 40 high school Florida seniors have earned a 2013 National Merit Scholarship. They are part of the first group of winners awarded scholarships this year financed by businesses. The announcement was made by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

“These students are the best and brightest of our state’s outstanding schools and their efforts and diligence are models for us all,” said Florida Commissioner of Education Dr. Tony Bennett. “They are competing with their peers on a national level and I am proud of their achievement in this very challenging process.”

Last fall, National Merit Scholarship Corporation officials recognized high school seniors as semifinalists who had the highest scores on the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test and met published program participation requirements. To be considered for a scholarship, semifinalists also submitted a detailed application that included their academic record throughout high school, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, and honors and awards received. The student also submitted an endorsement by a high school official, wrote an essay, and earned SAT scores that confirmed their earlier performance on the qualifying test. Winners are the candidates judged to have the strongest combination of academic skills and achievements, extracurricular accomplishments, and potential for success in rigorous college studies.

“Our national merit scholars serve as a model that every student has the ability to learn at a high level,” Bennett added. ”It is exciting that the Common Core State Standards will ensure even more Florida students have this type of opportunity in the future.”

Corporate sponsors provide National Merit scholarships for students who are children of their employees, who are residents of communities the company serves, or who plan to pursue college majors or careers the sponsor wishes to encourage. Most of the awards are renewable for up to four years of college undergraduate study and provide annual stipends that range from $500 to $10,000 per year; some provide a single award between $2,500 and $5,000. Recipients can use the scholarship at any regionally accredited U.S. college or university of their choice.

The National Merit Scholarship Corporation is a not-for-profit organization established in 1955 to conduct the National Merit Scholarship Program. The scholarships honor the nation’s scholastic champions and encourage the pursuit of academic excellence. For more information, visit National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

2013 National Merit Scholarship Finalists.

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