Paragould High School is excited to announce that senior Ashton Rodrigues has been named a finalist in the National Merit Scholarship program.

High school juniors entered the 2022 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the  2020 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®), which  served as an initial screen of program entrants. The nationwide pool of semifinalists, representing  less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors, includes the highest-scoring entrants in each state.  The number of semifinalists in a state is proportional to the state’s percentage of the national total  of graduating seniors. 

To become a Finalist, the semifinalist and a high school official must submit a detailed  scholarship application, in which they provide information about the semifinalist’s academic record,  participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment,  and honors and awards received. A semifinalist must have an outstanding academic record  throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by a high school official, write an essay, and  earn SAT® or ACT® scores that confirm the student’s earlier performance on the qualifying test. 

From the approximately 16,000 semifinalists, about 15,000 were expected to advance  to the Finalist level, and in February were notified of this designation. All National Merit  Scholarship winners will be selected from this group of Finalists. Merit Scholar designees are  selected on the basis of their skills, accomplishments, and potential for success in rigorous college  studies, without regard to gender, race, ethnic origin, or religious preference.  
 National Merit Scholarships  

 Three types of National Merit Scholarships will be offered in the spring of 2022. Every  Finalist will compete for one of 2,500 National Merit® $2500 Scholarships that will be awarded on  a state-representational basis. About 1,000 corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards will be  provided by approximately 220 corporations and business organizations for Finalists who meet their  specified criteria, such as children of the grantor’s employees or residents of communities where  sponsor plants or offices are located. In addition, about 180 colleges and universities are expected  to finance some 4,000 college-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards for Finalists who will attend the  sponsor institution. 

National Merit Scholarship winners of 2022 will be announced in four nationwide news  releases beginning in April and concluding in July. These scholarship recipients will join more than  362,000 other distinguished young people who have earned the Merit Scholar title.