Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Local News

March 29, 2010

6 in Howard County are National Merit Scholar finalists

Awards will be given starting in April

Six Howard County seniors have been chosen as National Merit Scholar finalists for 2010.

Allison Schten from Kokomo High School and Anthony Bednarz, Molly Lauterbach, Nathan Lyons, Adam Ripley and Corinne Soutar from Western High School are among the finalists for the scholarship awards. Winners will be announced starting in April.

About 1.5 million students entered the competition by taking the 2008 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. The nationwide pool of semifinalists, which represents fewer than 1 percent of U.S. high school seniors, includes the highest scoring entrants in each state.

The finalists have an opportunity to continue in the competition for about 8,200 National Merit Scholarships, worth more than $36 million. According to the College Board, about half the finalists will become National Merit Scholars.

To become a finalist, a semifinalist must have an outstanding academic record throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by the high school principal and earn SAT scores that confirm the previous test scores. Each one also must complete a detailed scholarship application.

Schten, daughter of Karl and Barbara Schten, said she’s waiting to see what kind of scholarships are available before making her college choices. She’s been accepted at Indiana University and the University of Chicago, and is waiting to hear from New York University.

She may study economics, to either go into economic law or earn a doctorate in economics.

Schten said her parents are hoping she earns a National Merit Scholarship to help with college expenses, but “at least being able to put National Merit finalist on scholarship applications will help.”

She’s participated in Science Olympiad, debate and soccer, and is editor of the Kokomo High School yearbook.

Lauterbach, 18, daughter of Stew and Judy Lauterbach, plans to attend Indiana University Bloomington. She plans an exploratory major, possibly studying “something related to linguistics, French or Spanish.”

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