Class of 2021 National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists

Congratulations to seniors Jessica Bond, Michael De Vera and Matthew Do for being named National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists in recognition of their outstanding academic achievements. Jessica, Michael and Matthew are among approximately 16,000 high school students nationally who made the National Merit Semifinal list.

Acting High School Principal Ryan Aiello praised the students for their accomplishments, “We are excited to celebrate the incredible accomplishments of Jessica, Michael and Matthew. This is an amazing achievement, and we’re so proud of the outstanding work—both in and out of the classroom—that they have accomplished to earn this recognition.”

These academically talented seniors have an opportunity to compete for 7,600 National Merit Scholarships worth approximately $30 million that will be awarded in the spring of 2021. Over 90% of the semifinalists are expected to attain finalist standing, and more than half of the finalists will win a National Merit Scholarship.

Each student provided advice that they would give younger students.

  • Jessica Bond: “Something I would say to younger students is to keep exploring their passions with confidence and drive, and to not be afraid to stand up for themselves and stand out.”
  • Michael De Vera: “Try your best not to procrastinate, stay focused on the future, get lots of sleep, and if you want to get good at something, practice constantly.”
  • Matthew Do: “[Younger students should] make sure they realize they can ask their teachers and fellow peers not only for academic advice, but also for advice on how to start working towards any personal goals.”

Over 1.5 million juniors in more than 21,000 high schools entered the 2021 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2019 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test, 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. Merit Scholar Finalists will be selected based on their skills, accomplishments and potential for success in rigorous college studies.