The faculty and staff of Pleasant Valley Community High School are pleased to announce that the following seniors were recently honored as National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists in the 2020 National Merit Scholarship Program: Ashish Abraham, son of Abraham George and Susan Abraham of Bettendorf; Darsh Balani, son of Dinesh and Preeti Balani of Bettendorf; Aditya Desai, son of Sahil and Swati Desai of Bettendorf; Grace Halupnik, daughter of Mark and Jennifer Halupnik of Bettendorf; Margaret Huang, daughter of Chang Huang and Kathryn Wang of Bettendorf; Maya Johnson, daughter of Thomas and Christine Johnson of Bettendorf; Paul Malachuk, son of Daniel Malachuk and Catherine Reinhardt of Bettendorf; Aadil Manazir, son of Fraza Manazir and Radhika Kolla of LeClaire; Joseph Murphy, son of Richard and Janene Murphy of Bettendorf; and Prakruti Pancholi, daughter of Sanjay and Karishma Pancholi of Bettendorf.
To become a Finalist, the Semifinalist and his or her high school 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, write an essay, and earn SAT® scores that confirm the student’s earlier performance on qualifying test.
From 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 Finalist group. 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.
Merit Scholarship winners of 2020 will be announced in four nationwide news releases beginning in April and concluding in July. These scholarship recipients will join some 338,000 other distinguished young people who have earned the Merit Scholar title.
Pictured Left to Right Front Row: Prakruti Pancholi, Grace Halupnik, Darsh Balani, Maya Johnson, Margaret Huang
Second Row: Aditya Desai, Ashish Abraham, Aadil Manazir, Paul Malachuk, and Joseph Murphy