Six Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) students have won corporate-sponsored National Merit Scholarships financed by companies, foundations, and other business organizations. The students are among 20 corporate-sponsored scholars in Maryland. Nationally, 1,070 scholars were chosen from a group of 15,000 finalists in the annual program of the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC), based in Evanston, Ill.
The winners, intended career fields, and sponsors are:
· Montgomery Blair High School: Tencia C. Lee, science applications, SAIC; Randolph H. Li, cognitive science, Watson Wyatt & Co.; Robert J. Vlacich, electrical engineering, Omron; Kristina Y. Yang, biochemistry, Computer Sciences Corp.
· Richard Montgomery High School: Di Sun, biology/biomedical engineering, Watson Wyatt & Co.
· Walt Whitman High School: Margaret J. Morrison, economics, Marsh & McLennan Companies
Most corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarships are renewable for up to four years of college undergraduate study and range in value from $500 to $10,000 annually. Some of the awards provide a single payment between $2,000 and $5,000.
The scholars are all high school seniors who were selected for their academic skills and achievements, extracurricular accomplishments, potential for success in rigorous college studies, and other criteria of one of several hundred corporate sponsors. Students attained finalist status based on criteria such as exceptional performance on standardized tests and in the classroom, strong recommendations from school officials, and an essay describing activities, interests, and goals.
Recipients of two other kinds of Merit Scholarships will be announced later this year. On May 4, NMSC will announce the winners of National Merit $2,500 Scholarships, for which all finalists compete. On May 25 and July 11, NMSC will announce winners of Merit Scholarships sponsored by colleges and universities for finalists who will attend those institutions.