Two Burbank Unified Seniors Vie For National Merit Scholarships

By On September 11, 2014

Two Burbank Unified students, Burroughs High School senior Brennan Flynn and Burbank High School senior Candace Kim, have been selected as semi-finalists in the National Merit Scholarship annual competition. Flynn and Kim’s PSAT scores are amongst the highest in the state of California and the nation.

Out of the 1.4 million juniors who took the test during the 2013-14 school year, about 16,000 students nationwide scored high enough to enter the scholarship competition’s semi-final round. Both Flynn and Kim will have the opportunity to advance to the final round of competition and vie for 7,600 scholarships worth $33 million.

Burroughs High School counselor Sheila Masters and Principal John Paramo announce senior Brennan Flynn's (center) selection for National Merit Scholarship semifinalist. (Photo Courtesy John Burroughs High School)

Burroughs High School counselor Sheila Masters and Principal John Paramo announce senior Brennan Flynn’s (center) selection for National Merit Scholarship semifinalist. (Photo Courtesy John Burroughs High School)

To move on as finalists, students must continue to meet competition requirements and take the SAT, earning a score that confirms their initial PSAT high score. They also must submit an application with the endorsement of their school principal and an essay.

Burbank High School's Candace Kim is a semi-finalist for the National Merit Scholarship awards. (Photo Courtesy of Burbank High School)

Burbank High School’s Candace Kim is a semi-finalist for the National Merit Scholarship awards. (Photo Courtesy of Burbank High School)

“Burbank High School is proud of Candace and her high achieving status on the national level,” said BHS Assistant Principal of Guidance, Jacquie Day. “We join with students, faculty and staff in congratulating her and wishing her well in the next phase of the competition. We can’t wait to see where Candace will leave her paw print! It’s great to be a bulldog!”

“Brennan is one of 2,108 high school students in California that are considered semi-finalists, which is quite an academic feat!” commented Kimberley Clark, Public Information Officer for BUSD. “Congratulations to Brennan, his family and the JBHS staff.”

Of the 1.4 million students taking the PSAT, which tests critical reading, mathematics and writing skills, approximately 50,000 receive top scores. Two-thirds of those are recognized as Commended Students, who may be eligible for other scholarships. The top one-third, or about 16,000 students, are notified of their semi-finalist status in September every year. Most of those semi-finalists meet the criteria to go on to compete as finalists.

Scholarship winners will be announced in the spring of 2015, from a pool of about 15,000 finalists, according to the non-profit National Merit Scholarship Corporation.