The Blue & Gold

The official newspaper of Chamblee High School, preserving the past for the future today!

The official newspaper of Chamblee High School, preserving the past for the future today!

The Blue & Gold

The official newspaper of Chamblee High School, preserving the past for the future today!

The Blue & Gold

National Merit Scholarships are Back

As the PSAT approaches Chamblee High School’s upcoming class of juniors, the scores return to the former test-takers. A select few seniors achieved phenomenal scores, and qualified to be National Merit Scholars. 

“I got a 1450 on my PSAT,” said Tyler Malemezian (‘24), “It’s pretty cool to be a national merit scholar.”

This achievement was only won by 15 seniors at Chamblee this year, and it is certainly a tough one to attain. 

“I’m so happy to have received this honor and represent our school,” said Sophia Wang (‘24), “I used a tutoring service to improve my PSAT score and studied once or twice a week.”

Other students put effort into improving their scores in hopes of their hard work being paid off. 

“I mean, I did a little bit of studying, and then I just showed up and showed out,” said Malemezian. 

Others combined studying for the SAT and PSAT, and knocked out both with their determination. 

“I studied for maybe five hours, but that was for the SAT because I took it a week before,” said Cooper Malone (‘24).

Other semifinalists felt as though they were already prepared for the test. 

“I didn’t study hard at all,” said Aiden Lee (‘24). 

Most of the winners who prepared for the test had a feeling their scores would achieve them the honor. 

“I thought I did pretty good on my PSAT score, above how I usually did, so I wasn’t surprised,” said Wang. 

Students who usually performed well on tests seemed to replicate their behaviors. 

“I kind of saw it coming because we got the PSAT scores a long time ago,” said Jack Bolte (‘24).

Other winners weren’t as prepared for the honor. 

“I think I got like a 1470, but I was still surprised,” said Leo Song (‘24), “I didn’t study for the PSAT.”

The difficulty of the cutoff in order to become a semifinalist has increased the past couple of years, which seemed to deter the confidence of test-takers. 

“I was pretty surprised because the requirements to get it went up slightly this year, so I thought I didn’t get it,” said Malone. 

Usually, SAT and PSAT scores are on similar levels. But for some, the correlations aren’t as close as the test-takers believed.

“I was surprised because I didn’t study for it and my SATs scores weren’t that great, but somehow my PSAT score ended up being higher than my SAT score, which was crazy,” said Daniel Lou (‘24). 

In reality, many students felt the award was insignificant. 

“I personally think standardized testing is b*llsh*t to begin with. So I don’t really care,” said Lee.

These tests are designed to show academic achievement, but not everyone can show this through tests. 

“It’s just a standardized test so it doesn’t really reflect my intellectual ability, but I guess it reflects my test taking skills,” said Isabelle Coursey (‘24). 

If these semifinalists move on to the next round, they receive tools that can aid them during the next years of higher education. 

“It will probably look good when I’m applying to colleges. Plus I’ll be less broke in college,” said Bolte. 

The title of being a semifinalist is a prestigious honor to some institutions. 

“I feel like it’ll help me get into better colleges,” said Malone.

The semifinalist label on an application can open the door to many opportunities. 

“I think it’ll definitely improve my college application and resume,” said Wang.

Along with bragging rights, a National Merit Scholarship of $2500 is offered to finalists. 

“If I get the scholarship I wouldn’t have to pay as much for college. That would be great,” said Coursey.

On top of this money, there are also college-sponsored and corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarships available.

“Some colleges will give you up to a full tuition, but most of them just give you like $2,000, which is still good. The less selective ones usually give more money,” said Malone.

This title is a good one to have, and the scholars who received it are headed towards esteemed higher education. 

“Brown is my first choice, and I think that if I should make it as a finalist based on my test scores, and if I get a scholarship from there, it’ll be nice to have to have to pay less for college,” said Seegars, “Hopefully, it’ll help me get into a good college by having the honor on my application.”

Overall, our Chamblee National Merit Scholars deserve all the praise that comes along with this achievement. 

“I think the first thing my parents said when I told them,” said Seegars, “was congratulations.”

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About the Contributor
Sarah Marcus, Staff Writer
Sarah Marcus (‘24) is a senior and Staff Writer at the Blue and Gold. In five years, she hopes to be out of college, traveling, and exploring the world. Her three favorite things are being outside, adventure activities of any sort, and dance parties.

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