Nease, Ponte Vedra High students selected as National Merit Scholars


Two students at Allen D. Nease High School and one student at Ponte Vedra High School have been selected as National Merit Scholars.

Nease students Ava Hampton and Malavika Nair each earned the designation, as did Ponte Vedra High School student Adam Snowden. All three students received a $2,500 scholarship from the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

The students were among 2,500 Merit Scholar designees selected from more than 15,000 finalists in the 2017 National Merit Scholarship Program. National Merit scholarship recipients are those finalists in each state judged to have the strongest combination of accomplishment, skills and potential for success in college studies. The number of winners named in each state is proportional to the state’s percentage of the nation’s graduating high school seniors.

Scholars were selected by a committee of college admissions officers and high school counselors, who assessed finalists’ academic records, an essay written by the finalist and recommendations by a high school official.

This year’s National Merit Scholarship Program began in October 2015, when more than 1.6 million juniors in more than 22,000 high schools took the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®), which served as an initial screen of program entrants. Last fall, the highest-scoring participants in each state, representing less than 1 percent of the nation’s high school seniors, were named semi-finalists on a state-representational basis.

From the semifinalist group, some 15,000 students met the high academic standards and other requirements to advance to the finalist level of the competition.