Wednesday, October 11th, the juniors and sophomores took the PSAT/NMSQT Test. The PSAT is the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. The scores of the test are used to identify National Merit Scholars and award merit scholarships. The test is given once a year in October, and it takes about 2 hours and 45 minutes. On the test, students are tested on Math and Evidence-Based Reading and Writing. Each section of the test is scored on a scale of 160-760, making the maximum score one can receive a 1520.

National Merit Semifinalists represent less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors. Out of about 1.6 million high school seniors from around the United States, 16,000 became National Merit Semifinalists based on their performance on the PSAT/NMSQT. St. Patrick had three National Merit Semifinalists from the October test of last year; Tyler Jackson, John McKee, and Richard Springer.

I asked Richard what he had to say about becoming a semifinalist and he shared this with me, “I am very honored to have been selected for this scholarship. I cannot stress enough the importance of doing your very best on the PSAT- the National Merit Scholarship is life-changing. To have three semifinalists from our class of about 80 is phenomenal. That’s the second highest number of semifinalists from one school out of all those on the coast. I am blessed to have been afforded this opportunity and thank all my teachers for having built within me a solid foundation of mathematics, literature, and language. I wish good luck to all the juniors this year and hope to see several semifinalists come out of St. Patrick!”

Story by Sydney Biggs