Bartlett, Mann, Okazaki named Commended Students

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Photo by Kelsie Chong

National Merit Scholarship Program

By Kelsie Chong, features co-editor

Students Wyatt Bartlett, Makai Mann and Abigail Okazaki have been named Commended Students in the 2012 National Merit Scholarship Program for outstanding performance on the PSAT.

“I was really surprised,” Okazaki said. “I know it’s a lot harder to score higher on the PSAT than on the SAT, so I was not expecting that.”

About 34,000 Commended Students throughout the nation were recognized for their exceptional academic promise.

These students placed among the top five percent of more than 1.5 million students who entered the 2012 competition by taking the 2010 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT). However, they will not continue on to the next steps in the 2012 competition for National Merit Scholarships.

“I prepared for the SAT’s the summer before we took the PSAT, so that helped me a lot,” Mann said.

He was happy to hear the outcome of the results but wished he made it to the semifinalist and finalists standings.

Bartlett said he did not study for the PSAT, but made sure he was prepared for the test. “I did make sure that I had some basic and essential things for taking the test, such as a pencil, eraser, and calculator,” he said.

Those who were named Commended Students may still be candidates for special scholarships from corporate and business sponsors. They are also asked to name two colleges to which they will be recommend by the NMSC.

“The young men and women being named Commended Students have demonstrated outstanding potential for academic success,” commented a spokesperson for the National Merit Scholarship Corporation. “These students represent a valuable national resource; recognizing their accomplishments, as well as the key role their schools play in their academic development, is vital to the advancement of educational excellence in our nation. We hope that this recognition will help broaden their educational opportunities and encourage them as they continue their pursuit of academic success.”

Hawaiian Language teacher Kumu Ululani Kepani is glad to see their hard work pay off. “Those three seem to always try their best in all they do,” she said.

A Letter of Commendation from the school and NMSC, which conducts the program, will be presented by the principal to these scholastically talented seniors.

Click here to be taken to the NMSC and learn more about the National Merit Scholarship Program.