Seven students from Lexington-Richland School District Five have been announced as semifinalists in the National Merit Scholarship program.

The academically talented high school students from School District Five are represented in the nationwide pool of semifinalists which represents less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors.

“I am proud of this academic accomplishment of these National Merit Scholars as they represent the high-quality students that we have here in School District Five,” said Chief Instructional Officer Michael Guliano. “This honor is a testament to the academic rigor throughout our system that is producing students who will go on to have bright futures. Congratulations to each of the semifinalists.”

School District Five National Merit Scholarship semifinalists include: Sasha Bacot (Spring Hill), Paige Maylath (Chapin), Eric Mitchell (Dutch Fork), Peter von Ahn (Spring Hill), Seungwook Won (Dutch Fork), Benjamin Wang (Dutch Fork), and Jessie Zhao (Dutch Fork).

These seniors have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,600 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $30 million that will be offered next spring. More than 1.5 million juniors in about 21,000 high schools entered the 2021 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test, which served as an initial screen of program entrants.

“We are beyond excited to see School District Five well represented in the National Merit Scholarship Program,” said School District Five Superintendent Dr. Christina Melton. “Academic excellence is a community effort- family, teachers throughout our system and support staff extend their specialized services to enable success of our students. We applaud the individual effort of each student and the network of support that have enabled them to reach this prestigious recognition”

National Merit Scholarship winners of 2021 will be announced in four nationwide news releases beginning in April and concluding in July. These scholarship recipients will join some 353,000 other distinguished young people who have earned the Merit Scholar title.