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Pennridge High School Honors Five students for the National Merit Scholarship

For the second consecutive year and only the second time in a decade, five PHS Students will receive commendations for Academic excellence through the 2024 National Merit Scholarship Program.

Perkasie, Pennsylvania.

Five academically talented students in the Pennridge School District are being recognized for their academic excellence and two have been named as Semifinalists in the 69th annual 2024 National Merit Scholarship Program and have the opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,140 National Merit Scholarships, worth more than $28 million that will be offered in the Spring:

  • Benjamin Swartley - National Merit Scholarship Semifinalist

  • Liam Brennan- National Merit Scholarship Semifinalist

  • Riley Cullen- National Merit Scholarship Commended

  • Rudra Patel- National Merit Scholarship Commended

  • Hudson Poe- National Merit Scholarship Commended

This is the first time in more than a decade that Pennridge High School has had two semifinalists for the National Merit Scholarship and these Pennridge students also represent the second consecutive year that five total students earned National Merit Scholarship accolades. Last year, Pennridge High School also had five students recognized which was the highest since 2012.

The NMSP determines which students qualify as Commended Students and Semifinalists. According to officials at the NMSP, “In general, students who score in the top 3-4% are named Commended Scholars, while students who score in the top 1% are deemed, Semifinalists.” Both Ben Swartley and Liam Brennan and the nationwide pool of Semifinalists represent less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors. High school students enter the National Merit Program by taking the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®), which serves as an initial screen of entrants each year, and by meeting published program entry and participation requirements. Of the approximately 16,000 Semifinalists, about 15,000 are expected to advance to the Finalist level, and in February they will be notified of this designation. 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.

Three types of National Merit Scholarships will be offered in the spring of 2024. Every Finalist will compete for one of 2,500 National Merit® $2500 Scholarships that will be awarded on a state-representational basis. About 950 corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards will be provided by approximately 180 corporations and business organizations for Finalists who meet their specified criteria. In addition, about 160 colleges and universities are expected to finance some 3,800 college-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards for Finalists who will attend the sponsor institution.

Pictures of the students can be accessed here

Captions: 

Picture 1 (From L-R Riley Cullen, Liam Brennan, Ben Swartley, Hudson Poe, Rudra Patel)

Picture 2 (From L-R Riley Cullen, Liam Brennan, Ben Swartley, Hudson Poe, Rudra Patel)

Picture 3 (From L-R (From L-R Dr. Kathy Scheid, Assistant Superintendent of Secondary Schools, Mrs. Cara Gurysh, PHS 12th Grade House Principal, Riley Cullen, Liam Brennan, Ben Swartley, Hudson Poe, Rudra Patel, Mr. Dean Behrens, 12th Grade Guidance Counselor, Mrs. Yesenia Cuthbert, 12th Grade Guidance Counselor)

Picture 4 (From L-R (From L-R Dr. Kathy Scheid, Assistant Superintendent of Secondary Schools, Mrs. Cara Gurysh, PHS 12th Grade House Principal, Riley Cullen, Liam Brennan, Ben Swartley, Hudson Poe, Rudra Patel, Mr. Dean Behrens, 12th Grade Guidance Counselor, Mrs. Yesenia Cuthbert, 12th Grade Guidance