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Eighteen new graduates receive 2019 National Merit college-sponsored scholarships

The National Merit Scholarship Corp. on June 5 announced over 3,500 winners of awards financed by U.S. colleges and universities, including 18 new graduates of Fayette County Public Schools. Each sponsor college selected their scholarship winners from among the finalists in the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Program who plan to attend their school. The awards provide between $500 and $2,000 annually for up to four years of undergraduate study. 

From Henry Clay High School:

  • Christopher Beebout, University of Kentucky, probable career field: law;
  • Lucas Etter, University of Kentucky, mathematics;
  • Kathleen Joseph, University of Kentucky, undecided.

From Lafayette High School:

  • Catherine Donson, Scripps College, environmental science;
  • Valerie Langdorf, University of Central Florida, business management;
  • Michael Lozovoy, University of Kentucky, computer science;
  • Kyrsten Myrup, University of Alabama, international relations;
  • Anna Marie Watrous, University of Kentucky, music.

From Paul Laurence Dunbar High School:

  • Katrina Baniak, Northwestern, computer science; 
  • Marlene Broady, University of Kentucky, engineering;
  • Madison Costes, University of Alabama, medicine;
  • Andrew Du, Vanderbilt University, engineering;
  • Kevin Jing, University of Southern California, undecided;
  • Caitlin LaBianca, University of Rochester, biology;
  • Ashley Rowell, Michigan State, medicine;
  • Jacob Styer, University of Kentucky, physics;
  • Olivia Tussey, University of Kentucky, medicine.

From Tates Creek High School:

  • Samuel Wyse, University of Kentucky, engineering.

The 2019 National Merit Scholarship Program began two years ago when over 1.6 million juniors in some 22,000 high schools took the PSAT, which served as a qualifying test. In fall 2018, the highest-scoring participants in each state, representing less than 1 percent of the country’s high school seniors, became semifinalists. (FCPS had 51.) Of these 16,000 seniors, about 90 percent advanced as finalists. A committee of college admissions officers and high school counselors then appraised a substantial amount of information such as the senior’s academic record, scores from two standardized tests, contributions and leadership in school and community activities, an essay, and recommendation from a high school official. About half the finalists will win merit scholarships.

The $2,500 National Merit award winners were announced May 8, following corporate-sponsored scholars on April 17. Additional college-sponsored awards will be released in mid-July. By the end of the 2019 program, about 7,600 students will have earned the “merit scholar” title and received a total of more than $31 million in college scholarships.


Tammy L. Lane, district webmaster
(859) 381-4236