Juniors prepare for the National Merit Scholarship test

Students will be taking a test to assist their future.


Thomas Lietz

Students who took the National Merit Scholarship last year are presented with their award.

Madalyn Dishman, Managing Editor

If your next step after high school is college, it’s crunch time. On October 14, Utica will be hosting the National Merit Scholarship test for all juniors.

This test is actually a competition where students will take the PSAT/NMSQT test and hope to score high enough to qualify for recognition. Students with the top scores in their state can move on to being a semifinalist and even a finalist.

“There’s a chance that if you do well, you have this incredible opportunity,” principal Tom Lietz exclaimed. “It’s like telling someone that behind that door is the opportunity for $1 million, the cost of opening that door is opening that door. It just takes a little bit of your time.”

So, what does being a National Merit Scholar mean? Well, becoming a finalist or receiving recognition not only looks great on resumes, but can give you a real advantage when college application time rolls around. This test will be shown to colleges where students can receive scholarships for their accomplishments.

Taking the PSAT is highly recommended by Lietz and many teachers around the building because of the impact that it could have on your academic career.

According to Lietz, “getting your hair did” for homecoming can wait. The test is only a short amount of time on homecoming day.

“I’m taking the test so I can prepare for the SAT,” junior Cayley Ebeling said. “I’m preparing by using Khan Academy.”

Students must sign up by October 9 with a fee of $20. The test will begin at 8 am and should run until noon on October 14. Practice tests and study help can be found on Khan Academy or on College Board.

To sign up for the SAT/NMSQT, click here.