Huntington High School senior Aidan Forbes has been named a finalist in the National Merit scholarship program, placing the teenager among the top members of America’s Class of 2018.
Mr. Forbes is a member of a select group of 15,000 academically high powered United States seniors. He was presented with a certificate by high school Principal Brenden Cusack on behalf of the National Merit scholarship program on Friday.
Beginning in March and concluding several months later, about 7,500 finalists will be notified they have won a scholarship award drawn from a pool of $32 million that is available this year.
“I’m really happy to have made it to the final stage of the competition and am hoping to be awarded one of the scholarships in March,” Mr. Forbes said.
President of Huntington High School’s National Math Honor Society chapter, Mr. Forbes has been a key member of the Mathletes teams and is also active in the stocks analysis club.
A starting player on the Huntington’s first varsity boys’ soccer team to win an outright league championship in 28 years, Mr. Forbes senior year course lineup includes Advanced Placement Chemistry, AP Government and Politics, AP Micro/Macro Economics, AP Calculus BC, AP English Literature and Composition and Spanish V Honors.
“Aidan has shined both in and beyond the classroom for many years,” Huntington Superintendent James W. Polansky said. “He has found success in so many regards as result of his talents and abilities, as well as his hard work and commitment. I am certain that he will continue to further cultivate and pursue his interests. There is simply nothing that is beyond his reach.”
A superb athlete, Mr. Forbes was named to Suffolk’s Academic All-County soccer team following a sensational senior season.
“Aidan is an excellent scholar and a fine young man,” Mr. Cusack said. “It comes as no surprise that he has moved on in the competition and I wish him the best of luck in the final round.”
The 63rd annual National Merit competition drew more than 1.6 million teenagers from 22,000 high schools. The students “entered the 2018 National Merit program by taking the 2016 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT), which served as an initial screen of program entrants,” according to the National Merit website. “The nationwide pool of semi-finalists, which represents less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors, includes the highest scoring entrants in each state.”
In addition to high scores on the PSAT/NMSQT, National Merit scholarship competitors must also meet various stringent participation requirements. They are eventually assigned a “selection index” that is based on their critical reading, math and writing skills scores.
Financial awards include 2,500 National Merit scholarships worth $2,500 each; 1,000 corporate sponsored scholarships provided by 230 corporations and organizations; 4,000 college sponsored scholarships provided by 190 institutions.