80 Cobb High School Seniors Named Semifinalists for National Merit Scholarships 

On September 12, officials for the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) announced the names of approximately 16,000 semifinalists in the 64th annual National Merit Scholarship Program. Eighty of this year’s semifinalists attend a Cobb County School District high school. For the second straight year, Walton High School ranks second in Georgia for the number of National Merit semifinalists with more than 30 students earning the semifinalist title.

Having 17 National Merit semifinalists pushes Wheeler High School ahead of the majority of other high schools in Georgia. Along with the Walton and Wheeler students, Cobb semifinalists from Campbell High School, Kennesaw Mountain High School, Lassiter High School, North Cobb High School, and Pope High School will have the opportunity to compete for 7,500 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $31 million.

Over 1.6 million juniors in about 22,000 high schools entered the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2017 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®), which served as an initial screen of program entrants.

The nationwide pool of semifinalists represents less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors and includes the highest-scoring entrants in each state. The number of semifinalists in a state is proportional to the state’s percentage of the national total of graduating seniors. More than 90 percent of the semifinalists are expected to be named National Merit Scholar finalists in February.

To be finalists, semifinalists and their high school must submit a detailed scholarship application, in which they provide information about the semifinalist’s academic record, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment, and honors and awards received. A semifinalist must have an outstanding academic record throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by a high school official, write an essay, and earn SAT® scores that confirm the student’s earlier performance on the qualifying test.

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 2019. Every finalist will compete for one of 2,500 National Merit® $2500 Scholarships that will be awarded on a state-representational basis. About 1,000 corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards will be provided by approximately 230 corporations and business organizations for finalists who meet their specified criteria, such as children of the grantor’s employees or residents of communities where sponsor plants or offices are located. In addition, about 180 colleges and universities are expected to finance some 4,000 college-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards
for finalists who will attend the sponsor institution.

The 2019 National Merit Scholarship winners will be announced in four nationwide news releases beginning in April and concluding in July. These scholarship recipients will join some 338,000 other distinguished young people who have earned the Merit Scholar title.


Cobb County School District National Merit Semifinalists:

Campbell High School
Avery R. Bradley
Alexander R. Eaton
Kiran Gourisankar
Tarannum M. Lakdawala
Quentin P. Mot
Luccas L. Shang

Kennesaw Mountain High School
Nicholas J. Dentice
Grant J. Gilcrease
Tylar P. Gregg
Dimitrios A. Kidonakis
Dorian E. Kidonakis
Lily H. Kim
Joshua R. Vollbracht
Harrison D. White
Emily K. Williams
Christina M. Woodrow

Lassiter High School
Sophia D. Babish
Eric Chow
Dennis G. Goldenberg
Peter R. Jacobson
Carter B. Johnson
Carter H. Kubes
Peyton R. Lamb
Delia K. Pung
Audrey J. Safir
Dylan Walters

North Cobb High School
Rebekah R. Geil

Pope High School
Jacob T. Evans
Griffin W. Haarbauer
Edward C. Kokan
Maya Nambiar
Olivia D. Popovich

Walton High School
Albert Chen
David Cornell
Alison Cumberledge
Thomas DeBoer
Ava Edmunds
William Ellsworth
Eashan Gandotra
Vineet Gangireddy
Nicholas Hong
Emma Hunt
Jeffrey Key
Darren Kosen
Varun Krishnaswamy
Grace Lee
Ryan Li
Jesse Liu
Arundhati Mahendrakar
Isha Palakurthy
Anika Park
Sara Patyi
David Phillips
Varsha Ramachandra
Alice Shen
Daniel Shu
Elizabeth Sims
Albert Ting
Illahi Virani
Jayson Wu
Kevin Wu
Grace Xu
Margare Zhang

Wheeler High School
Saman A. Bhamani
Fianko Buckle
Mariah K. Butts
Caden M. Felton
Ayush Goyal
Adith Guna
Vanessa I. Leonardo
Andrew J. Mayne
Arya N. Mevada
Shivam A. Patel
Abhinav Piplani
Shraddha Sekhar
Keshav K. Shenoy
Rebecca G. Simonson
Hanna E. Waltz
David M. Weinberg
Zachary R. Yahn