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Seven Harpeth Hall seniors earn 2022 National Merit Semifinalist distinction

2021-2022 National Merit Semifinalists

Seven members of Harpeth Hall’s Class of 2022 earned the distinct honor of being named semifinalists in the 67th annual National Merit Scholarship program. 

The Harpeth Hall seniors are among 16,000 semifinalists from across the country.

"I am honored to be named a National Merit semifinalist, as I believe this is a testament to the outstanding educational foundation provided by Harpeth Hall School," said senior Brooke Lytle, who plans to pursue a joint major in economics and history in college. "Harpeth Hall truly encourages a love of learning. The Harpeth Hall faculty and students are engaged in a shared pursuit of knowledge, and I feel honored to be part of a community that so values education."

The road to National Merit semifinalist recognition begins during a student’s junior year when she takes the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. The exam measures a student’s critical reading ability, mathematical problem-solving skills, and writing ability. 

The highest-scoring program entrants in each state are selected as National Merit semifinalists. Harpeth Hall’s honorees are in the top 1% of high school seniors across the country. 

This year’s semifinalists join a tradition of academic excellence at Harpeth Hall. The students appreciate the learning that happens in their classes where teachers encourage outside-the-box thinking and where enthusiasm is contagious.

"I have had the most amazing teachers here that are all so engaging, intelligent, and kind," said National Merit semifinalist and Harpeth Hall senior Cate Frist, who would like to study broadcast journalism in college.

While Harpeth Hall’s National Merit honorees focus on their senior year, they are also thinking about their futures. More than 7,500 National Merit scholarships worth more than $30 million will be awarded next spring.

"I'm glad my studying paid off," said senior Lexi Stewart, who plans to pursue a career in computer science. "The scholarship can be used to support me in college as I pursue my major."

To advance as a National Merit finalist and be considered for a Merit Scholarship award, semifinalists must have an outstanding academic record and receive recommendation letters from school officials. They must also submit a scholarship application that highlights academic record, participation in school and community activities, and demonstrated leadership abilities. The qualifications fit in line with all they have learned at Harpeth Hall, where students learn to think critically, lead confidently and live honorably.

"I love the spirit I see every day at Harpeth Hall," said Harpeth Hall senior and National Merit semifinalist Molly Niswender, who would like to pursue a major in biology and a minor in film. "The talent and complexity that every single person has at our school are absolutely incredible. Everyone has their own story and their own passions, and it is so amazing to see my classmates' dreams in action." 

Congratulations to Harpeth Hall’s
2022 National Merit Scholarship Program Semifinalists

Cate Frist

Mary Husmann

Brooke Lytle

Elizabeth Nelson

Molly Niswender

Lexi Stewart

Eleanor Taylor