Five high school seniors from Bishop Seabury Academy in Lawrence have been named finalists in the National Merit Scholarship competition.
Matt Patterson, academic dean at the school, said the students are Eilish Gibson, Kristofer Knudson, Ethan Ward, Isaac Ward and Thomas Westbrook.
The scholarship competition is based largely on scores the students earn on tests taken their junior year known as the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test-National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test, or PSAT-NMSQT.
Of the estimated 1.5 million students nationally who take the test each year, only about 15,000, or 1 percent, are named finalists. The National Merit Scholarship Corporation will announce the names of about 8,000 scholarship winners beginning this spring.
Scholarship winners are judged on several factors, including two sets of test scores, their academic record, recommendations from school officials, information about the student's activities and leadership, and original essays they submit.