The National Merit Scholarship Corporation recently announced the names of the 16,000 semifinalists in the 66th annual National Merit Scholarship Program.
Newton High School had two semifinalists, Jakob Graber and Elise Jantz.
Both Graber and Jantz are members of the FIRST Robotics team and are seniors this year.
Graber said his goal is to attend college at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and study engineering.
Jantz is involved in gymnastics, Scholars Bowl and orchestra. She also participates in piano competitions. Jantz said she wants to enter into the field of science.
More than 1.5 million juniors entered the program by taking the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT).
According to the release, more than 90% of the semifinalists are expected to become finalists and more than half of the finalists will win a National Merit Scholarship. To become a finalist, the semifinalist and a high school official must submit an application with information on their academic records, honors and awards received. The student must also write an essay. The National Merit Scholarship winners will be selected from the finalists based on their skills, accomplishments and potential for success in college studies.