Leominster High Student a National Merit Semifinalist
By Peter Jasinski
LEOMINSTER -- Eric Jenny is so humble that he needs other people to brag about his being recently named a National Merit Scholarship semifinalist.
“He has truly separated himself from the elite of the elite,” said Leominster High School Principal Steven Dubzinski. “We’re in a very high-ranking area of the country and he should feel really honored about this.”
Based on the PSAT scores of the 1.6 million high school students who took the test last year, the status of semi-finalist means Jenny, now a senior, scored within the top 1 percent of students in the state, which is made all the more impressive by the fact that he was already taking the test in Massachusetts, which ranks among the nation’s highest average scores.
“I think I feel pretty normal,” the 17-year-old Jenny said Tuesday, when the National Merit Scholarship Program announced its semifinalists. “I don’t know if it’s life altering or anything, but I do think that it’s really cool.”
As one of 16,000 semifinalists, he will now have to apply to be one of the program’s 2,500 finalists. That honor comes with a scholarship of about $2,500, however, as Dubzinski pointed out, it is also a major incentive for colleges when accepting students and awarding scholarships to incoming freshmen.
Jenny, who is currently enrolled in the Center for Technical Education Innovation’s electronics program and a member of the Boys & Girls Club’s robotics team, already has a list of schools he hopes to start applying for, with Carnegie Mellon University and MIT near the top. He hopes to study robotics.
Finalists for the 2019 National Merit Scholarship will start to be announced next April.
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