Bronxville Union Free School District

Senior Named National Merit Scholarship Semifinalist

Distinguished Bronxville High School senior Allison Barker, who has shown outstanding academic talent and is known to seek out a wide range of academic and extracurricular opportunities, has been named a semifinalist in the 2018 National Merit Scholarship competition.

Barker is among approximately 16,000 high school students nationwide who were awarded the distinction by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation, and she represents the top 1 percent of students with the highest scores on the qualifying Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. Barker took the qualifying test in 2016 along with 1.6 million other juniors from more than 22,000 high schools nationwide.

“Ali’s transcript reveals a very successful student in many of the most challenging courses offered at Bronxville High School,” guidance counselor Barbara Dhyne said. “It also reflects her accomplishments and passions in science, history, theater, reading and writing. Her independent study work under the mentorship of her teacher Justine McClellan, which focused on the health of the Bronx River and its associated watershed, has now led to expanding the research to be part of our school curriculum.”

Outside of school, Barker gives back to her community through numerous volunteer organizations. Additionally, she has a black belt in martial arts and recently attended a summer program in Michigan to study theater.

As a semifinalist, Barker is in the running for one of approximately 7,500 scholarships worth more than $32 million that will be offered in the spring. About 90 percent of the semifinalists will advance to the next round, and about half of the finalists will win a National Merit Scholarship. To become a finalist, Barker must submit a detailed scholarship application, demonstrate an outstanding academic record, write an essay and earn scores that confirm her earlier performance on the qualifying test.

National Merit Scholarship finalists will be announced in February, while scholarship winners will be announced in the spring.

In addition, seven BHS students, who are among 34,000 Commended Students nationwide, were recognized by the NMSC for their performance on the qualifying test. They are Laura Holland, Charlotte Prior, William Ramundo, Grace Randall, Margot Richards, Robert Schetlick and Kenneth Taylor.