Five Cherokee County School District high school seniors have been named 2021 National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists.

They are:

♦ Dylan Iovino, Cherokee High School;

♦ Nathan Davis, Creekview High School;

♦ Ben Willett, Etowah High School;

♦ Nicholas Audinet, River Ridge High School; and

♦ Jeremy Jeong, Sequoyah High School.

“Congratulations to each of these outstanding students, their families and their teachers!” Superintendent of Schools Brian V. Hightower said. “This is a significant academic achievement that comes after many years of hard work and dedication, and we’re incredibly proud of their success. We look forward to seeing them advance in the competition, as each is deserving of this honor and more.”

The students will be honored by the Cherokee County School Board at the School Board’s meeting this month through a virtual recognition.

The National Merit Scholarship Corp. oversees the competition, and named 16,000 semi-finalists, who were chosen from 1.5 million students based on exceptional 2019 PSAT scores. Less than 1 percent of U.S. high school seniors earn the title of semifinalist.

For the next level of competition, the students will complete an application detailing academic achievements, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment, and honors; an endorsement and recommendation from a high school official; and an essay. Students must additionally have earned SAT scores that confirm their PSAT performance.

National Merit then will announce the 15,000 finalists, who will compete for 7,600 scholarships worth about $30 million to be awarded in the spring.

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