Six Culver Academies seniors/first classmen have been recognized on a national level for academic excellence. Academic Dean Kevin MacNeil made the announcement during the academic convocation on Feb. 10.
Five students – Catherine Bevil (Omaha, Neb.), Eleanor Ericson (Culver), Dhruva Mehta (Bourbonnais, Ill.), Michael Noronha (Lake Forest, Ill.), and Suraag Srinivas (Chelmsford, Mass.) – have been named National Merit Scholarship finalists.
Senior Julia Hernandez (Pueblo, Colo.) has been designated by The College Board as a National Hispanic Scholar, an academic designation used by colleges to identify exceptional Hispanic students.
The National Merit Scholarship program honors individual students for their exceptional scholastic potential, as measured by the National Merit Qualifying Test, the PSAT. The qualifying score was 218, which corresponds roughly to a 2,200 on the SAT, MacNeil said. Culver students are selected from a pool of boarding school students covering a 10-state region.
Every year, approximately 1.4 million high school juniors in more than 22,000 high schools take the PSAT/NMSQT. The 15,000 finalists represent less than one percent of the total population who took the initial exam.
Finalists are eligible for one of approximately 7,400 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $32 million. The awards include National Merit Scholarships of $2,500, corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarships, and college-sponsored Merit Scholarships.
Scholarship winners are selected based on their academic records, information about the school’s curricula and grading system, two sets of test scores, high school officials’ written recommendations, information of the student’s activities and leadership, and each finalist’s own essay.
National Merit Scholarship winners will be announced starting in March and conclude by mid-June. The National Merit Scholarship Corporation has been in operation since 1955. It is a not-for-profit organization that operates without government assistance.