Nineteen students from Lexington-Richland School District Five have been announced as semifinalists in the National Merit Scholarship Program. All four high schools from District Five are represented. The nationwide pool of semifinalists represents less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors.

“We are beyond excited to see District Five well represented in the National Merit Scholarship Program,” said Chief Instructional Officer Dr. Christina Melton. “These students epitomize the best of the best, and it is just another example of the great students, engaged parents and dedicated teachers we have in this district.”

Representing Chapin High are: Clayton Bellinger, Valerie Smith, Noah Swingle, Ryan Trinter and Karsen Ward. Representing Dutch Fork High are: Thomas Buchmann, Andrew Crawford, Matthew Herbst, Sunjay Jayaram, Kyle Jensen, Courtney Lubaczewski, Cameron Muccio, Leila Nguyen, Sanatana Reddy, Sarah Thomas and Connor Willoughby. Representing Irmo High is Davis Cassell. Representing Spring Hill High are: Germaine Washington and Mason Williams.

These academically talented high school seniors have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,500 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $32 million that will be offered next spring. About 1.6 million juniors in more than 22,000 high schools entered the 2018 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2016 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT), which served as an initial screen of program entrants.

“What an honor it is to have all four of our high schools represented in the National Merit Scholarship Program,” said District Five Superintendent Dr. Stephen Hefner. “I am so proud of these students and we wish them the best as they move forward in this competition. This is a testament to the emphasis we put on teaching and learning, and is another example of why we believe District Five is extraordinary.”