Schools across the county had students on the prestigious list.
Photo: AJC file
Photo: AJC file

High school seniors across DeKalb named National Merit semifinalists

Nearly 40 students across DeKalb County are one step closer to being named National Merit Scholars.

According to numbers released this week, 37 seniors in the county were named semifinalists in the National Merit Scholarship Program.

About 1.5 million students from high schools across the country entered the National Merit program by taking the 2018 Preliminary SAT, or PSAT. From those entries, just 16,000 were named semifinalists.

The pool of semifinalists amounts to less than 1% of American high school seniors, the group said.


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A semifinalist must have an “outstanding academic record throughout high school” along with a recommendation by a high school official, an essay and high SAT/ACT scores, the program said in a statement.

In the DeKalb County School District, seniors at Druid Hills, Lakeside, Chamblee Charter, Decatur, Dunwoody, Arabia Mountain and Tucker high schools made the prestigious list. Some private schools located in DeKalb, including Ben Franklin Academy, The Paideia School and St. Pius X Catholic High School, also had semifinalists.

Chamblee Charter High School had the most semifinalists, with 13.

Nearly 90% are expected to move to the finalist round, which requires a detailed scholarship application with their academic record, participation in school/community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment, and honors/awards received. Finalists are set to be notified in February.

Ultimately, National Merit Scholars will earn scholarships worth $31 million total.

Here are the semifinalists:

Arabia Mountain High School

Camille Chatman

Ben Franklin Academy

Jonas Iskander

Chamblee Charter High School

Emily Adams

Rachel Choi

Andrew Council

Layla Dhabaan

Anish Jaisinghani

Deborah Kitzler

Amy Lin

Connor Lin

Hudson McGaughey

Ritu Reddy

Ethan Shi

Brenna Turner

Shanru Xu

Decatur High School

Garrett Baird

Shalin Jain

Druid Hills High School

Theodore Shepherd

Dunwoody High School

Galya Fischer

Justin Jasper

Lakeside High School

Hanna Baniassad

Adan Jarvis

Ruby Reich

Madelyn Shaffer

Jenny Zha

Emily Zhou

The Paideia School

Will Hutchinson

Aidyn Levin

Charlotte Lewis

Josephine Miller

John Spencer

Emiko Wu

Anna Zheng

St. Pius X Catholic High School

Ty Mancao

Tatiana Solsrud

Tucker High School

Joshua Perlmutter

Eric Shavkin

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