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Grandview Senior Elizabeth Buckley Announced as Semifinalist in the 2021 National Merit® Scholarship Program

September 09, 2020
By Grandview Communications

September 9, 2020 |Boca Raton, FL - Today, officials of the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) announced the names of approximately 16,000 semifinalists in the 66th annual National Merit Scholarship Program.

Grandview Preparatory School is thrilled to share that one semifinalist for the 2021 National Merit Scholarship Program is senior Elizabeth Buckley. These academically talented high school seniors now have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,600 National Merit scholarships worth more than $30 million that will be offered next spring.


To be considered for a Merit Scholarship® award, semifinalists must fulfill several requirements to advance to the Finalist level of the competition. Over 90% of the semifinalists are expected to attain Finalist standing, and more than half of the finalists will win a National Merit Scholarship, earning the Merit Scholar® title.

Buckley was selected due to her many societal and academic accomplishments at Grandview and beyond. Not only has she maintained a perfect GPA during her time in Upper School as well as through her dual enrollment at Florida Atlantic University (FAU), Buckley is also “deeply committed to advancing the causes of justice, democracy, and liberty.”

Recent accomplishments include:
  • Two-time alumnus of the ACLU Advocacy Institute

  • Named “Young Justice Nerd" by the Center for Policing Equity (CPE) and Google.org

  • Received the “Spirit of the Barb Schmidt Fellowship Award” while a fellow at FAU

  • Internship with Florida Senator Lori Berman

  • Co-founder of Grandview’s Activism Club

  • Grandview SGA President (2020-21)

Congratulations Elle!

For more information about the competition, visit NMSC’s website at www.nationalmerit.org.


Over 1.5 million juniors in about 21,000 high schools entered the 2021 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2019 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®), which served as an initial screen of program entrants. The nationwide pool of semifinalists, representing less than 1% of U.S. high school seniors, includes the highest-scoring entrants in each state. The number of semifinalists in a state is proportional to the state’s percentage of the national total of graduating seniors.

To become a finalist, the semifinalist and a high school official must submit a detailed scholarship application, in which they provide information about the Semifinalist’s academic record, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment and honors and awards received. A semifinalist must have an outstanding academic record throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by a high school official and write an essay.

From the approximately 16,000 semifinalists, about 15,000 are expected to advance to the finalist level, and in February they will be notified of this designation. All National Merit Scholarship winners will be selected from this group of finalists. Merit Scholar designees are selected on the basis of their skills, accomplishments and potential for success in rigorous college studies, without regard to gender, race, ethnic origin or religious preference.

Three types of National Merit scholarships will be offered in the spring of 2021. Every finalist will compete for one of 2,500 National Merit® $2500 scholarships that will be awarded on a state-representational basis. About 1,000 corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards will be provided by approximately 220 corporations and business organizations for finalists who meet their specified criteria, such as children of the grantor’s employees or residents of communities where sponsor plants or offices are located. In addition, about 180 colleges and universities are expected to finance some 4,100 college-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards for finalists who will attend the sponsor institution.

National Merit Scholarship winners of 2021 will be announced in four nationwide news releases beginning in April and concluding in July. These scholarship recipients will join more than 353,000 other distinguished young people who have earned the Merit Scholar title.

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