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Area students land National Merit Scholarships

A handful of national finalists come from Tigard and Tualatin

COURTESY PHOTO - The local area produced an outsized number of the state's National Merit Scholarship winners, with a handful coming from the Tigard and Tualatin areas.Area schools have produced an out-sized percent of Oregon’s recently announced National Merit Scholarship awardees.

The results are led by the Beaverton School District’s Westview High School, which produced five winners of its own, but Tigard and Tualatin were represented, too. Each of the winners listed below was awarded a $2,500 scholarship, with additional scholarships to be announced by summer.

Winners from the Tigard and Tualatin areas included: Nolan Jones of Southridge High; Oregon Episcopal School's Vikul Gupta, a Tualatin resident; Valley Catholic High School's Rose M. Rogers, a Tigard resident; St. Stephen’s Academy in Beaverton had one winner — Brandt C. Bergeron of Tigard; and St. Mary’s Academy in Portland had one winner — Clare McLeod, who lives in a zip code that is mostly inside Washington County.

Another area scholarship winner, Sharon J. Zhang, is a student at Phillips Academy in Andover, Mass.

National Merit $2500 Scholarship winners are the finalists in each state judged to have the strongest combination of accomplishments, skills and potential for success in rigorous college studies.

The selection committee included college admissions officers and high school counselors, who took into account: each student’s academic record, including difficulty level of subjects studied and grades earned; standardized test scores; contributions and leadership in school and community activities; an essay written by the finalist; and a recommendation written by a high school official.

Most of the scholarships announced in this round were supported by National Merit Scholarship Corporation funding, although Mitalipov of Aloha High won a scholarship supported by the UPS Foundation, and Rogers of Valley Catholic won a scholarship supported by Rockwell Collins.

Additional corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards winners will be announced in June and July.