The National Merit Scholarship Program promotes scholastic excellence, and has become one of the most sought-after achievements for high school students across the nation.

Recently, the organization released the names of its semifinalists, and we’re pleased to learn that five local students are among the 16,000 chosen – roughly 1 percent of the 1.5 million high school juniors who entered the competition.

We congratulate Lucy Alford, Anna-Grace Dumas, Taylor Edwards, William Edwards, and Emmett Lee, who have distinguished themselves among the top scorers in the state to join the ranks of the semifinalists. And we applaud Houston Academy and its instructional staff, as all five local semifinalists are HA students.

We wish these scholars well in their quest to be selected among the upcoming class of 7,600 National Merit Scholars with scholarships worth more than $31 million.

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