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95 MISD Juniors and Seniors Earn 97 National Merit and College Board Recognitions

Press Release|
Shane Mauldin|
Wednesday, October 25, 2023

McKinney, Texas – While cooler temperatures and the seeming arrival of fall may be met with skepticism by many Texans, one thing that can be counted on this time of year is the annual announcement of student recognitions from the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) and College Board.

Across the country every year, about 1.5 million high school juniors make their way to testing centers to sit for the PSAT/NMSQT exam, which serves as an initial screen of entrants into the National Merit Scholarship Program, a competition that can lead to academic recognition, college scholarships and the prestigious title of National Merit Scholar.

This fall, NMSC officials announced the names of 22 McKinney ISD seniors from McKinney Boyd High School, McKinney High School and McKinney North High School whose outstanding results on the PSAT/NMSQT earned them recognition as Commended Scholars and 7 who earned the highly prestigious designation of National Merit Semifinalist.

In addition to the announcements from NMSC, College Board announced the names of 18 MISD students honored in the National African American Recognition Program, 42 who were honored in the National Hispanic Recognition Program, 6 who earned distinction in the National Indigenous Recognition Program and 2 who were honored in the National Rural and Small Town Recognition Program for their exceptional performance on the PSAT/NMSQT, PSAT 10 or AP Exams.

Each recognition earned by these students represents not only a remarkable academic achievement, but also reveals tremendous focus, determination and hard work.

“We are so proud of our students in receiving this wonderful academic accomplishment,” said Dr. Javetta Jones Roberson, MISD Secondary Coordinator of Advanced Academics & Gifted/Talented. “We have representation for National Merit and the College Board’s National Recognition Program at all three of our high schools, which is phenomenal! We look forward to continuing to help support these students and their future endeavors as they positively impact our school, local and global community.”

National Merit Semifinalists

National Merit Scholarship Corporation has named approximately 16,000 Semifinalists in this year’s National Merit Scholarship Program, or approximately one-third of the 50,000 highest scoring students. These academically talented high school seniors represent approximately the top 1 percent of the nation’s high school graduating seniors and will have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,140 National Merit Scholarships worth $28 million.

To be considered for a Merit Scholarship® award, Semifinalists must fulfill requirements beyond their performance on the PSAT/NMSQT to advance to the Finalist level of the competition. About 95 percent of Semifinalists are expected to attain Finalist standing, and about half of the Finalists will win a National Merit Scholarship, earning the Merit Scholar® title.

McKinney Boyd High School National Merit Semifinalists
Matthew Johnson
Nisal Rajapakshe Gamage
Isaiah Williams

McKinney High School National Merit Semifinalists
Brady Almquist
Zainakai Blair-Roberts
Finnegan Sutka

McKinney North High School National Merit Semifinalists
Braden White

National Merit Semifinalist Photos

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McKinney Boyd National Merit Semifinalists — (l-r) Nisal Rajapakshe Gamage, Matthew Johnson, Isaiah Williams

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McKinney High School National Merit Semifinalists — (l-r) Brady Almquist, Zainakai Blair-Roberts, Finnegan Sutka

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McKinney North High School National Merit Semifinalist Braden White

National Merit Commended Scholars

Of the approximately 1.5 million students who take the PSAT/NMSQT, some 34,000 of the highest scoring entrants—representing roughly the top 2 percent—receive Letters of Commendation in recognition of their outstanding academic promise. Commended Scholars are named on the basis of a nationally applied Selection Index score.

Although Commended Scholars do not continue in the competition for National Merit Scholarships, some of these students do become candidates for Special Scholarships sponsored by corporations and businesses.

McKinney Boyd High School National Merit Commended Scholars
Haylee Chapman
Fernando Gutierrez
Rose McAllister-Ou
Parth Mehta
Benjamin Podor
Reid Salvador
John Stoecker
Jaden Williams

McKinney High School National Merit Commended Scholars
Jonathan Bacha
Jackson Davis
Hassan Khan
Nora Kristufek
Isabella Luna
Liesl Nichols
Isabel Norton
Eileen Vuong
Shane Wallis

McKinney North High School National Merit Commended Scholars
Joshua Duty
Benjamin Edwards
Sohee Kim
Ava Thomas
Leona Yamauchi

National Merit Commended Photos

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McKinney Boyd High School National Merit Commended Scholars — (front, l-r) Rose McAllister-Ou, John Stoecker, Haylee Chapman (back, l-r) Jaden Williams, Parth Mehta, Benjamin Podor, Reid Salvador, Fernando Gutierrez (Not available for photo: Diogo Bandeira, Michelle Gallegos)

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McKinney High School National Merit Commended Scholars — (front, l-r) Shane Wallis, Jonathan Bacha, Hassan Khan, Isabel Norton, Eileen Vuong (back, l-r) Isabelle Luna, Nora Kristufek, Jackson Davis, Liesl Nichols

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McKinney North High School Commended Scholars — (l-r) Ava Thomas, Sohee Kim, Benjamin Edwards, Joshua Duty, Leona Caleb Yamauchi

College Board National Recognition Programs

The College Board National Recognition Programs create pathways to college for students from underrepresented communities by awarding them academic honors and connecting them with universities across the country. Students who take the PSAT/NMSQT and identify as African American, Hispanic American or Latino, Indigenous or attend school in a rural area or small town, may be invited to apply for academic recognition as part of the College Board National Recognition Programs. Sophomores and juniors are score eligible if they score in the top 10 percent on the PSAT/NMSQT or PSAT 10 within program by state. They are also score eligible if they score a 3 or higher on two or more distinct AP Exams in the eligible exam periods.

National African American Recognition Program

McKinney Boyd High School National African American Recognition Program Honorees
Emmanuel Adenekan
Maliyah Braclet
Jonathan Brown
Byron Burrell
Daniel Emokpae

McKinney High School National African American Recognition Program Honorees
Jessica Amoasi
Skylar Anamekwe
Tylyn Hutson
Wisdom Otutu
Hannah Tadesse

McKinney North High School National African American Recognition Program Honorees
Zoe Anderson
Esther Anighoro
Sarah Anighoro
Ikenna Chukwuma
Niyana Green
Bruck Sorsa
Zion Tesha
Nathan Tyler

National African American Recognition Program Photos

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McKinney Boyd High School National African American Recognition Program Honorees — (front, l-r) Byron Burrell, Maliyah Braclet, Daniel Emokpae, (back, l-r) Jonathan Brown, Emmanuel Adenekan

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McKinney High School National African American Recognition Program Honorees — (l-r) Jessica Amoasi, Tylyn Hutson, Wisdom Otutu, Hannah Tadesse (Not available for photo: Skylar Anamekwe)

 

standing for photo

McKinney North High School National African American Recognition Program Honorees — Sarah Anighoro, Esther Anighoro, Ikenna Chukwuma, Zoe Anderson, Niyana Green, Nathan Tyler

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McKinney North High School National African American Recognition Program Honoree — Bruck Sorsa

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McKinney North High School National African American Recognition Program Honoree — Zion Tesha

National Hispanic Recognition Program

McKinney Boyd High School National Hispanic Recognition Program Honorees
Eric Acquatella
Diogo Bandeira
Michelle Gallegos
Juan Guarin
Fernando Gutierrez
Hazel Kennedy
Crosby Lee
London Lee
Joshua Rabady

McKinney High School National Hispanic Recognition Program Honorees
Emma Alonso
Paul Bachman
Alec Boss
Luke Coleman
Jairo Gonzalez
Morgan Gonzales-Morgan
Alexa Jaimes-Isaula
Graysen Malek
Clara McElroy
Addison Pena
Alanna Powell
Joseph Rodriguez
Alyssa Salazar
Jasmine Sanchez-Hernandez
Isaac Santiago
Alondra Serrano-Mendoza
Julianna Wieghat

McKinney North High School National Hispanic Recognition Program Honorees
Danica Anaya
Ava Barrientez
Jordan Bowie
Kiana Danielson
Galilea De La Garza
Brandon De Vun
Aiden Dodson
Noelia Enamorado
Adrian Fragoso
Daniel Garcia
Jack Garza
Preston Quintero
Nicholas Taylor
Eric Tierrablanca
Jasmin Vanessa Rodriguez-Sanchez
Joaquin Vargas

National Hispanic Recognition Program Photos

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McKinney Boyd High School National Hispanic Recognition Program Honorees — (front, l-r) Joshua Rabady, Crosby Lee, Eric Acquatella, London Lee, Hazel Kennedy (back, l-r) Fernando Gutierrez, Juan Guarin (Not available for photo: Diogo Bandeira, Michelle Gallegos)

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McKinney High School National Hispanic Recognition Program Honorees — (front, l-r) Alanna Powell, Jasmine Sanchez-Hernandez, Alondra Serrano-Mendoza, Julianna Wieghat (back, l-r) Isaac Santiago, Alec Boss, Paul Bachman, Emma Alonso, Addison Pena, Joseph Rodriguez (Not available for photo: Luke Coleman, Jairo Gonzalez, Morgan Gonzales-Morgan, Alexa Jaimes-Isaula, Graysen Malek, Clara McElroy, Alyssa Salazar)

standing for photo

McKinney North High School National Hispanic Recognition Program Honorees — (l-r) Kiana Danielson, Aiden Dodson, Joaquin Vargas, Brandon De Vun, Eric Tierrablanca, Daniel Garcia, Jack Garza, Adrian Fragoso, Preston Quintero, Nicholas Taylor, Noelia Enamorado, Galilea De La Garza, Jordan Bowie, Jasmin Vanessa Rodriguez-Sanchez

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McKinney North High School National Hispanic Recognition Program Honoree — Danica Anaya

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McKinney North High School National Hispanic Recognition Program Honoree — Ava Barrientez

National Indigenous Recognition Program

McKinney Boyd High School National Indigenous Recognition Program Honorees
Elizabeth Lindahl
Alyssa Mullen
Austin Poe

McKinney High School National Indigenous Recognition Program Honorees
Emma Woods
Isaac Santiago

McKinney North High School National Indigenous Recognition Program Honoree
Joshua Kern

National Indigenous Recognition Program Photos

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McKinney Boyd High School National Indigenous Recognition Program Honorees — (l-r) Elizabeth Lindahl, Austin Poe, Alyssa Mullen

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McKinney High School National Indigenous Recognition Program Honorees — Isaac Santiago, Emma Woods

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McKinney North High School National Indigenous Recognition Program Honoree — Joshua Kern

National Rural and Small Town Recognition Program

McKinney Boyd High School National Rural and Small Town Recognition Program Honoree
Lily Watson

McKinney North High School National Rural and Small Town Recognition Program Honoree
Thomas Carter

National Rural and Small Town Recognition Photos

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McKinney Boyd High School National Rural and Small Town Recognition Program Honoree — Lily Watson

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McKinney North High School National Rural and Small Town Recognition Program Honoree — Thomas Carter

Need Help?

If you need additional assistance with the content on this page, please contact MISD Communications Department team member Shane Mauldin by phone at 469-302-4007 or by email here .

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