Seniors (l-r) Christian Ondaajte, Sydney Read, Danielle Hanks, Alexis Hill, Susan Kim, and Abhay Singh have been honored in this year's National Merit Scholarship Program.

The National Merit Scholarship Corporation released the names of those honored in the 58th annual scholarship program earlier this month.

Susan Kim, a senior from Los Angeles, CA, was one of approximately 16,000 semifinalists from across the country, placing her on the top 1% of high school seniors based on preliminary SAT scores. Kim, along with the other semifinalists, has earned the opportunity to compete for National Merit Scholarship funds that will be awarded next spring.

Seniors Danielle Hanks of Porterville, CA, Alexis Hill of Bainbridge Island, WA, Christian Ondaatje of Los Angeles, CA, Sydney Read of Santa Barbara, CA, and Abhay Singh of Gold River, CA, were named as Commended Students in the competition, in recognition of their outstanding academic achievement and promise. Their results placed them in the top 2% students who took the test. Each year, about 1.5 million juniors in more than 22,000 high schools entered the 2013 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2011 PSAT in their junior year.

“These seniors are not only exceptional students, but they are also dedicated members of the Cate community,” said Cate’s headmaster Benjamin D. Williams IV. “Our entire School congratulates them for their high level of commitment and scholarship.”

The qualifying score for semifinalists is determined state-by-state to ensure that academically talented young people from all parts of the United States are included. California is one of five states (CA, DC, MA, MD, and NJ) that require the highest qualifying scores.

About Cate School

Founded in 1910, Cate School is a grade 9-12, coeducational, college preparatory boarding school in Carpinteria, California. What began as a group of twelve boys and a few teachers has expanded into a 265-student, 65-teacher, deeply academic and talented community with the most diverse student body of any boarding school of its size in the United States. The faculty are experts in their fields: 74% hold advanced degrees, 18% of these have PhDs. Cate is one of this nation’s most selective boarding schools, accepting only 20% applicants each year. 52% of Cate’s most recent graduating class attend the 25 top-ranked colleges and universities in the country. The Cate experience combines academics, athletics, art and co-curricular activities in a close-knit, community setting where students are enriched by their relationships with their teachers and each other. When students leave Cate, they have the tools and the conviction to seek out lives full of purpose and meaning.


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