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FUSD Students Named 2019 National Merit Scholarship Winners
Posted 5/8/19



FUSD is proud to count twelve 2019 National Merit Scholarship winners, representing three high schools, among its student population. In a May 8th, press release, the National Merit Scholarship Corporation announced this year’s class of National Merit $2,500 Scholarship winners. The 2,500 Merit Scholar designees were chosen from a talent pool of more than 15,000 outstanding Finalists in the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Program. FUSD students selected as National Merit Scholarship winners are:


American High School

            Jeffrey Chen

            Pallas Chou

            Rahul Swaminathan


Irvington High School

            Sean Cheah

            Vivian Liu

            Kevin Mao

            Isha Sanghvi


Mission San Jose High School

            Amy Chen

            Kanav Kalucha

            Andrew Wang

            Ashley Wang

            Maggie Yu



National Merit $2,500 Scholarship winners are the Finalists in each state judged to have the strongest combination of accomplishments, skills, and potential for success in rigorous college studies. The number of winners named in each state is proportional to the state’s percentage of the nation’s graduating high school seniors.


Scholars were selected by a committee of college admissions officers and high school counselors, who appraised a substantial amount of information submitted by both the Finalists and their high schools: the academic record, including difficulty level of subjects studied and grades earned; scores from two standardized tests; contributions and leadership in school and community activities; an essay written by the Finalist; and a recommendation written by a high school official.  


This year’s National Merit Scholarship Program began in October 2017 when over 1.6 million juniors in more than 22,000 high schools took the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test, which served as an initial screen of program entrants. Last fall, the highest-scoring participants in each state, representing less than one percent of the nation’s high school seniors, were named Semifinalists on a state-representational basis. Only these 16,000 Semifinalists had an opportunity to continue in the competition. In all, 119 FUSD students, representing four of the District’s comprehensive high schools, were on the list, helping Fremont post the 3rd-highest number of semifinalists (120) among cities in California – trailing only San Jose (203) and San Diego (162).


From the Semifinalist group, some 15,000 students met the very high academic standards and other requirements to advance to the Finalist level of the competition. By the conclusion of the 2019 program, about 7,600 Finalists will have earned the “Merit Scholar” title and received a total of over $31 million in college scholarships.


In addition, the National Merit Scholarship Corporation released the names of more than 1,000 high school seniors nationwide last month who won scholarship awards from 160 businesses, corporations and company foundations. Recipients were selected from among the finalists in the National Merit Scholarship competition after meeting certain criteria from the sponsors. Most winners are awarded stipends that range from $500 to $10,000 per year while attending college. Receiving scholarships from FUSD were:


American High School

            David Cao

            Mythili Korimilli


Circle of Independent Learning (C.O.I.L)

            Deepti Rema


Irvington High School

            Anikait Rao


Mission San Jose High School

            Andrew Chen

            Jonathan Ko

            Thalia Lightstone

            Apurv Prabhakar