Normally, a summons by the principal doesn’t involve cake and flowers — but that’s exactly what Lauren Payne and her parents encountered at Wiregrass Ranch High School on Sept. 14.
Principal Robyn White and Assistant Principal Cindy M. Jack wanted to share good news with the student and her parents because the high school senior is on the list of semifinalists in the 2017 National Merit Scholarship Program.
She’s one of 16,000 scholars across the country that are semifinalists in the 62nd annual National Merit Scholarship Program.
Semifinalists have an opportunity to compete for some 7,500 National Merit Scholarships which are worth about $33 million.
Semifinalists must fulfill several requirements to advance to the finalist level. About 90 percent of the semifinalists are expected to attain a finalist standing, and about half of the finalists are expected to win a National Merit Scholarship.
Payne’s parents, Janet and Greg, were pleased by the school’s gesture.
“It’s a very nice surprise. It’s very exciting. It’s really nice that they put this together,” Janet Payne said.
“It’s exciting,” Lauren agreed.
Her dad is proud of her accomplishments. “It is a lot of hard work that she’s putting into it and hopefully, it will turn out well for her.”
Here’s a list of other local National Merit semifinalists:
Land O’ Lakes
- Anmol Warman, Academy at the Lakes
- Nathaniel W. Edgar, homeschool
- Carter J. Bright, Land O’ Lakes High
- Michael Gendreau, Land O’ Lakes High
- Navya Jampani, Land O’ Lakes High
- Nicholas R. Riley, Land O’ Lakes High
- Maxwell Keenan, Land O’ Lakes High
- Karina N. Armas, Sunlake High
- Elle D. Hazlett, homeschool
- Joaquin Borggio, Steinbrenner High
- Bailey M. Zinckgraf, Steinbrenner High
- Riley L. Troyer, Carrollwood Day School
- Kaley A. Raabe, Gaither High School
- Jordyn E. Bizzell, Sickles High
- Henry M. Noell, Sickles High
- Samuel L. Unger, Sickles High
- April E. Olson, Wharton High
Published September 21, 2016