3 area students honored as 2022 National Merit semifinalists


From staff reports

Three area high school students have been announced as semifinalists in the 2022 National Merit Scholarship Program and will advance to the next level of competition.

Among the roughly 200 South Carolina students selected as national semifinalists were Timothy Brown and Holland Perryman of Beaufort High School and Mary Chumney of Holy Trinity Classical Christian School.

These students entered the 2022 National Merit Scholarship Program competition by taking the 2020 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. They are part of the nationwide pool of semifinalists that includes the highest-scoring entrants in each state, placing them in the top one percent of all U.S. high school seniors.

As semifinalists in the 67th annual National Merit Scholarship Program, they will compete with 16,000 national finalists for 7,500 college scholarships worth nearly $30 million.

“I am confident they will represent Beaufort County well in the next phases of this national competition,” Beaufort County School District Superintendent Frank Rodriguez said of Brown and Perryman in a release.

“Mary Chumney continues to excel and her Holy Trinity family is proud of her hard work and dedication to rigorous academics,” Holy Trinity Guidance Counselor Tara Gaillard said. “This award is yet another outward sign of the inward growth she has experienced over her many years at Holy Trinity. Soli Deo Gloria!”

In order to become a finalist, each semifinalist and their high school must now submit a detailed application that provides information about the student’s academic record, participation in school and community activities, leadership abilities, employment, and honors and awards. In addition, each semifinalist must be endorsed and recommended by an official from their high school, write an essay, and earn SAT scores that confirm the student’s earlier score on the qualifying test.

About 95 percent of the semifinalists are expected to attain finalist standing, and approximately half of the Finalists will win a National Merit Scholarship, earning the Merit Scholar title.

The National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) is a nonprofit established in 1955, and its scholarships are underwritten by NMSC with its own funds and more than 400 businesses and higher education institutions.

Above: Holy Trinity Classical Christian School senior Mary Chumney, left, has been named a National Merit Semifinalist. At right is HTCCS guidance counselor Tara Gaillard. Photo courtesy of Holy Trinity Classical Christian School.

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