National Merit Finalists

Father Ryan seniors Katie Cartiglia, Candice Chen, Samantha Correa, Javelyn Edwards and Hugh Hoagland have been named National Merit Finalists, the most by any Catholic high school in Middle Tennessee. Earlier this year all five were named as Semi-Finalists.

These students are among the very top students in the nation. Of 1.5 million entrants, only about 50,000 students qualify for recognition in the National Merit Scholarship Program, and only about 15,000 students are named National Merit Finalists. These bright students will now compete for a National Merit Scholarship at one of three levels, a reward only given to about half of the overall number of Finalists.

“We are so proud of these students for their exemplary performance on the qualifying tests,” said Sara Hayes, Vice Principal and Academic Dean at Father Ryan High School. “Each of these students embodies the long-standing tradition of academic excellence at Father Ryan High School. I would like to congratulate them on their performance at the highest levels of learning.”

In addition to these five finalists, the National Merit Scholarship Program also named seniors Nick Bellante, Colin Crist, Claire Gallagher, Matt McKenzie and Evan Nunez as National Merit Commended Scholars. Samantha and Evan also received commendation from the College Board as National Hispanic Scholars, along with classmates Charlie Marrder and Gustavo Morrice.

These students join the elite group of students who have been named National Merit Finalists during their time at Father Ryan. Congratulations to all of our honorees!


About the National Merit Scholarship Program

The National Merit® Scholarship Program is an academic competition for recognition and scholarships that began in 1955. High school students enter the National Merit Program by taking the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®) – a test which serves as an initial screen of more than 1.5 million entrants each year – and by meeting published program entry/participation requirements. 

To be considered for a National Merit® Scholarship, Semifinalists must advance to Finalist standing in the competition by meeting high academic standards set by the National Merit® Scholarship Program.

National Merit Scholarship winners of 2017 will be announced in four nationwide news releases beginning in April and concluding in July. These scholarship recipients will join more than 308,000 other distinguished young people who have earned the Merit Scholar title.