17 Shawnee Mission students named National Merit Finalists, 9 from SM South

Eight of SM South’s National Merit Finalists.

Seventeen Shawnee Mission high school students have advanced to the finalist round in the annual National Merit scholarship competition.

SM South leads the district with nine students who have been named finalists. SM Northwest has three students, and SM West and SM East have two each. SM North has one National Merit finalist this year.

Last year, 14 students made it to the finalist round.

This year’s finalists are:

SM East

  • Grace Chisholm
  • Ingrid Worth

SM North

  • Raphaella Kim

SM Northwest

  • Cameron Akagi
  • Benjamin Basel
  • Rachel Tao

SM South

  • Andrew Bauer
  • Madison Burch
  • Braeden Burgard
  • Ben Hanson
  • Robyn MacDonald
  • Adam Nicholas
  • Joel Quarnstrom
  • Cora Selzer
  • Thomas Stapp

SM West

  • Rachel Silverstein
  • Erin Smith

The National Merit program honors students who demonstrate advanced academic proficiency based on their performance on the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. Less than 1 percent of students who take that test are named National Merit Semifinalists each fall. In the spring, the organization announces its finalist list, which includes approximately 15,000 of the 16,000 students who made it to the semifinalist round.

The finalists are eligible for one of 2,500 scholarships National Merit $2,500 Scholarships, which are awarded based on a combination of academics, skills and college readiness. The scholarship winners are announced in April.